YONKERS, New York (WABC) -- The City of Yonkers opened its affordable housing waitlist for the first time in 10 years Tuesday.
In just two weeks more than 14,500 people applied for the 3,000 available Housing Choice Vouchers.
Jordana Hernandez, who is in a wheelchair, currently lives in a senior citizen building with her son who has special needs.
"It would give me a better place to live and more opportunities for him to be one of the children and be able to express himself and as a child," Hernandez said.
The payoff for the 3,000 names selected is to be added to a waiting list for Section 8 -- the federal program that allows low-income families to move into market rate apartments.
The rent is subsidized by Housing Choice vouchers.
Representatives from the Municipal Housing Authority for the City of Yonkers joined Yonkers Mayor Mike Spano at the drawing.
"It tells you that there is a real need and there are struggling families out there that really need housing, good quality housing, and they can't seem to get their hands on it," Spano said.
The federal government caps the number of vouchers municipalities can issue, and in Yonkers, the number is about 175 a year. So this is the first time the list has opened up in 10 years.
"When you see that a family of four is living on $12,000, $20,000 a year in Westchester, it's almost incomprehensible how can they survive," said Wilson Kimball with the Housing Authority.
The hope is that HUD will increase the number of vouchers that can be issued, making the wait shorter and the lives better for its neediest residents.
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