Alex Degman | @alexdegmanKMOX

WASHINGTON D.C. / CAIRO, Ill. (KMOX) — 42 Department of Housing and Urban Development inspectors have been fired due in part to ongoing public housing problems in Cairo, Illinois.

Congressman Mike Bost met with HUD Secretary Ben Carson to discuss what’s been happening since HUD took over property management from the Alexander County Housing Authority in early 2016. But things weren’t better with federal oversight.

“A lot of these, because of the lack of oversight, or because the inspectors turned their heads the other way, don’t go in and do their jobs to make sure they are handling the public trust in the right way. That’s what they did, they violated the public trust.

Conditions at some Cairo housing projects were so bad at the most recent inspection, some families were forced to move immediately because it would have been unsafe for them to stay. Bost, a conservative Republican, favors local control in most cases — but not here.

“If you have a corrupt local government and they put the people in there that have the kickbacks and do all the different things like was done here, and has been done in other locations around the nations, you’re going to have to monitor very very closely,” Bost told KMOX.

Roughly 180 households will be displaced, although Bost says he’s working with HUD on a more lenient timetable. He’s also pushing for legislation to ensure this doesn’t happen again.

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