Apartment owners and operators are "outraged" that the Federal Emergency Management Agency continues to house hurricane victims in hotels and motels when tens of thousands of apartments are available at nearly half the cost.The National Multi Housing Council and National Apartment Association have submitted lists of available apartments near the disaster areas that could be used by displaced families. But after a month of negotiations with government officials, "we have not received any assurances that these housing units are being considered for use by evacuees," NAA executive vice president Doug Culkin said. NMHC senior vice president Jim Arbury said his group is "not only bewildered, but outraged. We have worked with Department of Homeland Security officials to create a national clearinghouse of available apartments at www.hurricanehousing.net, yet the government has made no effort to publicize this resource to disaster relief officials or the evacuees." NAA and NMHC officials also noted that government waivers could open up units with federal subsidies and low-income housing tax credits to victims of hurricanes Katrina and Rita. However, Congress has not passed the necessary legislation.

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