The owner of supposedly illegal homeless shelters on Hall Place and Southern Boulevard in the South Bronx is close to receiving approval to effectively allow him to continue operations.
Residents have criticized the Julius Ausch-owned buildings for their mice, mold and poor construction work. The Department of Buildings has fined Ausch $5,000 for building the Hall Place property two floors higher than zoning laws allow. But the Department of City Planning approved a zoning exemption last week. The City Council has two months to make the final decision on the variance.
The Virginia-based service provider New Hope Transitional Housing leased the building and began operating the shelter, which holds 89 families total, in 2009.
A Department of Homeless Services spokesperson told the New York Daily News the agency was “being kept abreast” of the landlord’s efforts to make the buildings comply with the law. [NYDN] — Mark Maurer