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Maxine Waters' public housing bill clears key House committee

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A measure to preserve public housing is on its way to the floor of a different house - the House of Representatives. The sponsor is an L.A. Democrat.

It’s been decades since cities embarked on huge public housing projects. Democratic Congresswoman Maxine Waters of Los Angeles says as projects are torn down, developers mix low income housing with market rate units.

"But what we have discovered," she says, "is we don’t know what happened to the people who can’t get back into those units. So this is a new direction in the funding, care, and development of public housing and entire neighborhoods."

An estimated 200,000 public housing units have disappeared since 1995. The Waters bill would require a one-for-one replacement of any low income unit that’s demolished. The measure includes nearly $600 million in grants to help build new public housing; it also includes money for a job training program for home health care workers.

The House Financial Services Committee approved the bill this week.