Following near-daily reports of problems in New York City Housing Authority buildings, two studies on the $3 billion-a-year agency revealed severe dysfunction and has finally compelled it to make sweeping changes, the New York Daily News reported. The studies, one conducted internally and one by an outside consultant, found that NYCHA has a backlog of more than 338,000 maintenance orders, some of which won’t be addressed for two years.
As a result, the NYCHA board will be dismantled; two mayoral appointees would be removed along with their $187,000 annual salaries and their full-time drivers. Instead the board will include five members, only one, Commissioner John Rhea will be paid and two will be residents of housing projects. The New York Post noted that none of the other largest public housing agencies in the country have so many salaried members.
NYCHA also promised to commit all of the funds it’s sitting on to specific projects in the next 18 months, cut response repair time, upgrade security at the most dangerous developments, and seek federal funds to reduce energy consumption. As previously reported, Mayor Michael Bloomberg ignored warning signs of the agency’s vast inefficiencies. [NYDN] and [Post] — Adam Fusfeld