Cable television, but no paint?

While I was watching the City of Wichita’s cable channel 7 (where it’s all things good about Wichita, 24/7) Mary K. Vaughn, Director of Housing & Community Services appeared with an announcement:

The city has a free paint program. If homeowners meet income guidelines and their houses are located within certain areas of town, the city will give them free paint.

Here’s my question: If someone can afford cable television — that’s where the city’s channel 7 appears — can’t they buy their own paint?


10 thoughts on “Cable television, but no paint?”

  1. There they go again…playing favorites among neighborhoods. Not that government should be giving free paint to people under any circumstance, but why only do it in certain areas? Why does government believe some neighborhoods are more deserving than others? I’d love to hear that explanation.

  2. And they have cell phones, and they smoke, and they have bicycles for all of their children, and trampolines in the backyard… It’s strictly a matter of priorities, which for too many low-income folks are totally out of whack. I’m sure the city looks at this as helping the entire community, but as a landlord and someone with family members who exhibit that welfare mentality, I have no patience for people who make the same bad decisions over and over again and refuse to help themselves.

  3. Good point Bob! how can you afford cable, but not paint. The City has put up to $100,000 into painting people’s houses, while laying off employees.

  4. The city has initiatives to stop and reverse blight of low-income neighborhoods.

    Yes, wealthy, gated-communities don’t qualify for the $200 worth of wholesale priced paint. It’s just unfair, eh?

    The city has a program to walk targeted deteriorating neighborhoods and offer homeowners assistance in an effort to keep the areas from sinking lower. I learned of the program from one of the neighborhood evaluations, when a flyer was left on my front porch, not from cable TV.

    I am sure the City Council will welcome any free market ideas of how to stop poor neighborhoods from becoming blighted.

    Many or most of these homes in these neighborhoods are owned by landlords, some of whom have little interest in keeping them up, preferring to maximize their take home, regardless of how it affects the neighborhood.

  5. Wealthy gated communities? There are more than just wealthy gated communities that don’t qualify for this program, which is good. We began subsidizing irresponsible behavior in the 1960s, which has lead to people becoming even less responsible for that which they own, AND their own actions. If landlords are not taking care of the exterior of their properties, they can be taken to Environmental Court–they should not be given free paint. (And there will be a certain percentage of people who are given this free paint who will turn around and sell it, anyway.) We’ve made it easier for people to not work and constantly have their hands out–but complain about how poor they are, and how their plight is the fault of all those rich people–than to do an honest day’s work. This was perfectly illustrated for me by all of the Mexicans on the 5 roofs we had to have replaced on our rental properties after that freak hail storm. Lazy Americans should be doing this work, but why would they work that hard when they can hold their hands out, and we’ll put something in them? I’ve got a good free market solution for you: Let’s make people work for what the taxpayers give them. Then maybe they’ll decide they’d be better off just to find a job.

  6. The city has a legitimate interest in keeping housing stock viable and on the tax rolls, instead of declining into derelict, abandoned property. Thus there are programs available to help homeowners and landlords keep properties in good shape. Certain areas are on the tipping point of becoming slums and special attention is warranted, in my opinon.

    The city also offers “Paint labor grants”, available for senior residents and disabled. We don’t need 83-year-old widows on Social Security up on a 15 foot ladder, do we?

    My neighbors who are getting the help 1) work, 2) old and infirm with Parkinson’s disease, and 3) were recently unemployed by the business downturn.

    The paint has to be applied within six months of the grant, so selling it would create a problem for the grantee.

    For landlords, the City provides “Rental Housing Revolving Loan Program Single/Multi Unit”:
    Provides low-interest revolving loans, deferred for 2 years with a maximum of $10,000 per unit for property in the Local Investment Area. Maximum assistance to any borrower is $30,000. Loan amortized up to a maximum of 20 years.”

    I like your idea of a government-run “make work” program for those “lazy Americans.” Can you expand on how to roll that out?

  7. The city has a legitimate interest in keeping housing stock viable and on the tax rolls, instead of declining into derelict, abandoned property. Thus there are programs available to help homeowners and landlords keep properties in good shape. Certain areas are on the tipping point of becoming slums and special attention is warranted, in my opinon.

    The city also offers “Paint labor grants”, available for senior residents and disabled. We don’t need 83-year-old widows on Social Security up on a 15 foot ladder, do we?

    My neighbors who are getting the help 1) work, 2) old and infirm with Parkinson’s disease, and 3) were recently unemployed by the business downturn.

    The paint has to be applied within six months of the grant, so selling it would create a problem for the grantee.

    For landlords, the City provides “Rental Housing Revolving Loan Program Single/Multi Unit”:
    Provides low-interest revolving loans, deferred for 2 years with a maximum of $10,000 per unit for property in the Local Investment Area. Maximum assistance to any borrower is $30,000. Loan amortized up to a maximum of 20 years.”

    As far as children having a bicycle and other play things.. I’d think it is a credit to poor parents that they are trying to give their children a happy childhood. It makes for better citizens in the future.

    I like your idea of a government-run “make work” program for those “lazy Americans.” Can you expand on how to roll that out?

  8. I have no problem giving help to the deserving–especially those who have been productive citizens but are aging, ailing, or infirmed. But gov’t. programs, in general, reward and create irresponsibility. If we hadn’t started all of this in the 1960s with LBJ’s Great Society, perhaps we wouldn’t be in the mess we’re in today. Cold turkey is likely the only way to change things, and the turmoil would be astounding (when the Govenator talked about eliminating welfare in CA, I thought it would be a great test for the policy). But if we continue down the path we’re currently on, we’ll get that turmoil eventually, when this country is bankrupt. And I love the gotcha questions: “Can you expand on how to roll that out?” As someone who married into a family on welfare (my husband was the only one who got out), a landlord, and the mother of a public school teacher; I’ve seen what supposedly compassionate gov’t. policies do to people. They take away people’s pride and desire to be self-sufficient. They make people willing to live at a subsistence level as long as they don’t have to get off their derrieres.

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