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On Our Radar

A curated collection of links to news, analysis, trends, ideas and views from elsewhere.

Housing Wire: Freddie Mac First Out of the Gate with Plans for Targeted Lending Programs

Housing Wire, April 21, 2022, Freddie Mac First Out of the Gate with Plans for Targeted Lending Programs The special purpose credit programs will pertain to Black, Latino and Native American borrowers, according to Pamela Perry, head of Freddie Mac’s single-family equitable housing team. The programs will be announced in the third quarter of this …

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CNN: Senate report details ‘ongoing mistreatment’ of service members and their families living in privatized military housing

CNN, April 26, 2022, Senate report details ‘ongoing mistreatment’ of service members and their families living in privatized military housing The new report from the Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations under the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee alleges “ongoing mistreatment” of US service members and their families and mismanagement by Balfour. The report, …

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Forbes: Biden May Cancel Student Debt Soon, Lawmakers Say After Meeting

Forbes, April 26, 2022, Biden May Cancel Student Debt Soon, Lawmakers Say After Meeting President Joe Biden appears poised to likely cancel at least some federal student debt for millions of Americans, he signaled to lawmakers this week according to multiple reports, after White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said Monday the president is set …

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The New York Times: Harvard Creates Fund to Redress Its Ties to Slavery

The New York Times, April 26, 2022, Harvard Creates Fund to Redress Its Ties to Slavery The university is committing $100 million, joining other universities that are grappling with their complicity in the institution of slavery. A report released with Harvard’s announcement said that at its roots, the university, which was founded in 1636, owed …

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Politico: World’s Richest Man Buys ‘Free Speech’ for $44 Billion

Politico, April 25, 2022, World’s Richest Man Buys ‘Free Speech’ for $44 Billion Twitter’s board of directors accepted Tesla CEO Elon Musk’s bid to buy the company Monday, a takeover that could fundamentally change the types of conversations and diatribes allowed on Washington’s favorite social media platform — along with who gets to have their …

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AP News: Housing Shortage, Soaring Rents Squeeze US College Students

AP News, April 26, 2022, Housing Shortage, Soaring Rents Squeeze US College Students Nationally, 43% of students at four-year universities experienced housing insecurity in 2020, up from 35% in 2019, according to an annual survey conducted by The Hope Center for College, Community, and Justice at Temple University. Students reported being unable to pay utilities, …

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The Washington Post: Baby bonds? Reparations? There’s no quick fix for racial wealth gap

The Washington Post, April 1, 2022, Baby bonds? Reparations? There’s no quick fix for racial wealth gap The median White family has 10 times the wealth of the median Black family, according to a report, “The economic impact of closing the wealth gap,” by McKinsey & Co., a management consultant. And Black Americans can expect to …

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The Wall Street Journal: US Home Prices Hit a Record of $375,300 in March

The Wall Street Journal, April 20, 2022, U.S. Home Prices Hit a Record of $375,300 in March U.S. home prices soared to a new record in March while mortgage rates continued to rise rapidly, slowing home sales in what has been the hottest housing market in more than 15 years. Existing-home sales fell 2.7% last …

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The New York Times: A Rising Tally of Lonely Deaths on the Streets

The New York Times, April 18, 2022, A Rising Tally of Lonely Deaths on the Streets More than ever it has become deadly to be homeless in America, especially for men in their 50s and 60s, who typically make up the largest cohort of despair. In many cities the number of homeless deaths doubled during …

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The Washington Post: Report: Majority of renters can’t afford to buy in their city

The Washington Post, April 19, 2022, Report: Majority of renters can’t afford to buy in their city Double-digit rent increases in the past year make many renters long to lock in their housing costs by buying a home. But a recent analysis by Porch, a home services platform, found that 61 percent of renters can’t afford …

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The Wall Street Journal: Small Businesses Object to Rerouting of COVID-19 Aid

The Wall Street Journal, April 18, 2022, Small Businesses Object to Rerouting of COVID-19 Aid Small-business owners are bristling over a congressional proposal that would redirect unspent money from COVID-19 programs to provide $10 billion for the federal government’s pandemic health response, including vaccines and therapeutics. At issue is about $5 billion that Congress allocated for three …

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The Washington Post: Black, Latino communities have a higher level of oil drilling and pollution

The Washington Post, April 15, 2022, Black, Latino communities have a higher level of oil drilling and pollution Majority Black and Latino communities that received the worst grades under a racially discriminatory federal housing program known as redlining have nearly twice as many oil drilling wells as mostly White communities, a new study says. The …

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NPR: Millions of Americans are resorting to risky ways to buy an affordable home

NPR, April 14, 2022, Millions of Americans are resorting to risky ways to buy an affordable home Land contracts and other kinds of alternative financing have been around a long time, with roots in the race-based redlining that blocked Black Americans from traditional mortgages. But legal aid experts say they became more common after the …

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Grist: Historically redlined neighborhoods have twice the number of oil and gas wells

Grist, April 13, 2022, Historically redlined neighborhoods have twice the number of oil and gas wells The analysis is the first of its kind, the work of researchers at the University of California, Berkeley, the University of California, San Francisco, and Columbia University. They compared data on the location of plugged and active oil and …

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