Mayor Bill de Blasio aims to settle in court for more than $2 billion to improve living conditions within New York City’s housing projects.
This means roaches, rotten plasters and leaky roofs. These cover the complaints that more than 400,000 residents have reported against the New York City Housing Authority.
Therefore, it is no surprise that the federal government has slowly been sinking its claws into NYCHA by investigating these complaints.
This has garnered accusations of NYCHA deluding federal inspectors regarding numerous safety and health violations such as lead paint, which may be connected to the poisoning of 19 children between 2010 and 2016.
The city has settled lawsuits by agreeing to dedicate $2.2 billion to NYCHA.
Over the next five years, the city will provide $1.2 billion to NYCHA and an additional $1 billion, which is more than what the city has allocated over a four-year period.
The city also agreed to pay a $200 million supplement annually until the living conditions improve. NYCHA would also be subjected to federal oversight with a monitor appointed by the court.
Some residents are optimistic, asserting that more funding means more long-term repairs and renovations in NYCHA infrastructure.
However, former chairwoman of NYCHA Shola Olatoye, who resigned shamefully after falsifying reports for lead paint inspections, has been promising change since 2014.
Others, like Rick Lebron, a resident of the Bronx Patterson Houses, said NYCHA will “probably be more of the same.”
De Blasio defended his administration, claiming that “decades of divestment” by the state and federal government have harmed NYCHA.
Yet, lack of funding should not account for NYCHA’s lying and endangering of lives to save a few bucks.
With this $2.2 billion, NYCHA needs a complete restructuring and decentralization of authority to increase efficiency, such as granting individual housing projects more control over their budget since they best know the needs of their residents. An ethics seminar about lying among its employees would not hurt either.
NYCHA tenants are just as deserving of adequate housing as affluent New York residents.
The harsh truth is that the people’s faith in government has reached a new low since they have been double-crossed multiple times by an administration that is supposed to take care of their well-being. In all honesty, it should not take an 80-page lawsuit to finally respond to city residents.