NYCHA Rally Albany - March 16th, 2014


Pelham Parkway, Sack Wern and Throggs Neck Houses Residents call for New York State funding to fix deplorable public housing conditions


Albany, NY— State Senator Jeff Klein (D-Bronx/Westchester), New York City Council Member Ritchie Torres, Chair of the Committee on Public Housing, Senator Diane Savino (D-Staten Island/Brooklyn), Senator Adriano Espaillat (D-Manhattan/Bronx), Democratic Ranking Member of the Senate Housing Committee, and more than 500 hundred New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) tenants, today rallied at the state capitol to call for increased state funding to update and repair deplorable conditions in NYCHA developments in the Bronx and beyond.

NYCHA residents, including tenants of the Pelham Parkway, Throggs Neck and Sack Wern Houses, together with housing advocates Community Voices Heard and Real Affordability For All, filled the Million Dollar Staircase to decry current conditions and push for new investments in the nation’s largest  public housing stock. The rally represented the greatest mobilization effort by NYCHA residents in Albany in over a decade.


“NYCHA residents live in deteriorating and unsafe buildings where conditions like mold, broken fire doors, leaking roofs, and falling plaster ceilings consistently plague developments in all five boroughs. The deplorable state of these developments leaves one thinking that NYCHA is the city’s ‘worst landlord.’ I’m proud that the State Senate’s one-house budget resolution recognized my call to invest in NYCHA with oversight and also offers developers an incentive to do expeditious repairs in exchange for a zoning bonus. Standing here with hundreds of NYCHA tenants and organizers, our voices will be heard: funding NYCHA, the city’s largest affordable housing stock, is a wise and necessary investment,” said State Senator Coalition Co-Leader Klein.


“Public housing residents have suffered deteriorating living conditions for too long. It’s time for the State to reverse the decline of of our most precious affordable housing stock. I am proud to stand with residents, Senator Klein, and all of the state elected officials calling on Albany to reinvest in public housing,” said Council Member Torres, Chair of the Committee on Public Housing.


A joint-investigative report released in February by the offices of Senator Klein and Council Member Torres detailed dilapidated and dangerous conditions in NYCHA buildings. Recommendations in the report included state funding matched by funding from New York City, with an oversight component, to fix conditions in NYCHA developments. A NYCHA Repair Zoning Bonus providing developers an opportunity to earn zoning credits by making quality, expeditious repairs in developments was also recommended since NYCHA repair wait times could take up to two years.


The State Senate’s one-house budget resolution includes state funding through the JP Morgan Chase settlement for the NYCHA Revitalization Housing Fund, which includes an oversight component. The resolution also includes a NYCHA Repair Zoning Bonus.


After the rally, Bronx residents met with Senator Klein and Council Member Torres to discuss specific concerns in their buildings like surveillance cameras, security and services.


“Once again the residents of NYCHA came together demanding more money, accountability, and better service in a unified voice to bring forth positive change,” said Monique Johnson, President of the Throggs Neck Residents’ Council.

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