Adam Lang Wants To Rebuild Phila. In 195th Race

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by Tony West

Adam Lang … property power to the people.

Adam Lang … property power to the people.

Adam Lang is a candidate with a cause that strikes home. His own home, in fact.

Like many of his neighbors, the 10-year resident of the Sharswood neighborhood in North Philadelphia has seen his house, in which he had invested much time and money, condemned by the City in order to expand the Bloomberg Philadelphia Housing Authority development.

Lang thinks that’s wrong and that’s crazy. Now he is campaigning for the open seat in the 195th Legislative Dist. so that he can find ways Harrisburg can put brakes on Philadelphia’s mishandling of its available real estate, which, he charges, keeps Philadelphians poor and its government broke.

Public housing is just one example of bad land policy according to Lang. “PHA and the taxpayers are going to spend $500,000 per household to house 1,000 households,” he said. “If they simply gave $150,000 directly to each household, they could have housed 3,000 instead. Sharswood-Bloomberg is a plum that enriches select contractors, not lower-income people.”

Public housing also deprives poor people of equity, leaving them unable to afford to move to areas where jobs are more plentiful, Lang noted. It traps them in job-starved communities.

Philadelphia doesn’t have a housing problem, it has an income problem,” Lang asserted. It is better, he said, to “trust people to find their own resources” by giving them money to buy their own housing and directly instead of expecting a government agency to do it for them.

Bad land management goes far beyond PHA, as Lang sees it. The City’s cumbersome bureaucracy has locked up 40,000 parcels of unused land. The solution? Sell them, he said. “Sell the properties, collect the property taxes – then fund the schools and other programs.”

If elected to the House of Representative, Lang will fight to impose fiscal discipline on the City by a state-level oversight board similar to PICA. Harrisburg can hold City Hall’s feet to the fire to unload its properties and collect more tax revenue, he argues.

Lang is a computer networking engineer. He and his wife Aldridk are active in Sharswood community life. He has sat on the board of Brewerytown-Sharswood Community Civic Association for seven years. Lang has served on the advisory councils of two neighborhood schools and ran a financial-literacy program at Roberts-Vaux HS.

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2 Responses to Adam Lang Wants To Rebuild Phila. In 195th Race

  1. Thank you for the coverage on the campaign. I just want to offer a couple corrections to the article.

    – PHA spends closer to $400,000 per unit to build as opposed to $500,000.

    – My side yard is being condemned, not the house itself. My wife and I will lose our lawn. Other residents and businesses in the neighborhood are losing their homes.

    – I was on the Advisory Council of Reynolds Elementary. With Vaux, I helped to bring a financial literacy program to the school.

    Adam Lang
    August 6, 2015 at 11:21 am

  2. Thank you for correcting us. We have updated the story to reflect this.

    editor @pr
    August 6, 2015 at 11:55 am

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