Letter from the Interim Chair
Since I was appointed Interim Chair and CEO of NYCHA earlier this year, my team and I have taken a good, hard look at the Authority’s significant challenges and how they can be addressed. Our top priority is to improve the state of our buildings and residents’ quality of life.
As you know, there is a lot of work to be done. Our buildings need $32 billion worth of major repairs, from the renovation of kitchens and bathrooms to the replacement of roofs and boilers. At the same time, the federal government has reduced its funding to NYCHA by billions of dollars since 2001.
While other cities have abandoned public housing, NYCHA and New York City under Mayor de Blasio, are completely dedicated to preserving and strengthening this valuable resource so that it is here to serve the generations to come.
To get the resources NYCHA needs, and bring improvements and repairs to residents faster, we must take a new and radical approach. NYCHA’s Permanent Affordability Commitment Together (PACT) program is the path forward. By converting apartments to Section 8 funding and using other federal programs, PACT generates much-needed revenue for critical improvements such as new kitchens, bathrooms, windows, elevators, boilers, roofs, and common areas. At the same time, PACT maintains permanent affordability and residents retain their rights: rents remain at 30 percent of household income and, in almost all cases, residents can stay in their homes during the renovations. In addition, NYCHA continues to own the land and has the right to foreclose if there is any threat to permanent affordability.
We’ve already seen the success of the Rental Assistance Demonstration (RAD) program, one of our PACT initiatives, at Ocean Bay Apartments, where residents have benefitted from extensive improvements since RAD was brought to their development.
As part of our long-term strategic plan, NextGeneration NYCHA, the Authority originally planned to use PACT to renovate 20,000 apartments by the year 2026. Now, we are expanding and accelerating this effort to bring PACT to 62,000 apartments by 2028. Approximately 142,000 residents – more than a third of NYCHA residents – will benefit from PACT, which will bring billions of dollars worth of renovations and major repairs to their homes. Of course, this also means that resources can be re-directed to the more than 100,000 public housing units that will remain outside of PACT.
Given the severe funding realities NYCHA faces, I am confident that PACT is the best way forward to truly improve the condition of our buildings and residents’ quality of life. I look forward to working with you and other partners as we continue to develop these and other plans to generate the funding NYCHA needs to best serve residents.
Interim Chair & CEO