City housing agency banking on shaky federal funds

Nearly $4M in limbo as White House weighs housing cuts

Bill de Blasio and Maria Torres-Springer (Credit: Getty Images and Twitter)
Bill de Blasio and Maria Torres-Springer (Credit: Getty Images and Twitter)

The city’s housing agency has found itself in quite a predicament by banking on federal funds that it’s in danger of losing.

The Department of Housing Preservation and Development has said it expects to save $3.7 million through 2021 thanks to community development block grants from the federal government. But that’s the same pot of money that’s in danger of being cut by President Trump.

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“There are proposed huge cuts to the Department of Housing and Urban Development. That absolute elimination of the community development block grant program would mean a lot of things, It would mean less money for senior citizens, less money for senior centers, cuts to home repair for seniors,” Mayor Bill de Blasio said at a City Hall press conference, Politico reported. Without the grants, the mayor said the city won’t be able to protect tenants who lose heat or hot water or need other emergency repairs.

In March, Trump proposed cutting the federal housing agency’s budget by $6.2 billion and eliminating community block grants entirely.

NYC housing commissioner Maria Torres-Springer said 86 percent of her budget comes from federal funds. The agency can save $1.3 million during the rest of this fiscal year, and $1.6 million each fiscal year through 2021. [Politico]E.B. Solomont