Twenty-eight percent of Queens renters and a half-million citywide spend half of their income or more on rent, according to a study conducted by U.S. Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-Forest Hills).
Only the Bronx had a higher percentage of householders paying half their wages for rent, according to the study, based on U.S. Census figures.
In Queens, the number of people paying half their wages for rent increased 27.4 percent from 1999 to 2006, the most recent years for which such statistics are available.
"If New York City is going to continue as the middle-class capital of the world, then we need to have places where middle-class families can afford to live," Weiner said.
To that end, he has introduced legislation to provide more low-cost housing.
The study, which was conducted by Weiner's staff members and released last Thursday, showed that more than 500,000 people citywide are spending 50 percent or more of their income on housing a 14.9 increase since 1999.
The analysis, a look into how families in the city are spending their income on rent, indicated that the Bronx residents faced the greatest burden from rent at 32.85 percent of income.
Weiner announced legislation to help increase federal tax-free housing bonds to high population areas like New York City. It would increase federal funding for affordable housing by millions of dollars. Last year, the city Housing Development Corp. reported that the city lost out on nearly 7,000 housing units because of a lack of such tax-free bonds.
In Brooklyn, 29.97 percent paid at least 50 percent of their income on rent, with Manhattan 22.57 percent and Staten Island 27.32 percent.
Among the study's findings:
©2008 Community News Group
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