De Blasio slams NYCHA for botching Section 8 rent subsidies

November 10, 2011 11:08AM

Public Advocate Bill de Blasio has encouraged the New York City Housing Authority to discontinue Section 8 rent subsidies termination notices until problems with the agency’s new computer system are fixed. De Blasio will release a report today showing the agency’s failings during the last year, he told the Post.

“Tenants are getting eviction notices slipped under their doors because NYCHA has withheld months’ worth of rent that it should have paid,” the public advocate told the Post. “Months of unpaid rent is not a simple glitch — it’s a full-blown crisis. NYCHA needs to ensure that actual human beings are checking these cases to ensure the agency isn’t wrongfully throwing landlords into default, and tenants out on the street.”

As The Real Deal previously reported, a glitch in NYCHA’s new $36 million computer system has botched the payment of rent subsidies for many low-income families, causing some landlords to have to evict their tenants unnecessarily.

An NYCHA official said landlords are required to check with the agency before evicting a tenant. The official also said that the system would most likely be fixed by the end of the year.

“With the implementation of any large-scale business process redesign and technology deployment, there is an adjustment period of several months, especially with a program as dynamic as Section 8 where new information is constantly being processed,” the agency said in a statement. [Post]