FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE December 21, 2012
Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org, (212) 306-3322
NYCHA Storm Progress Report
All Sandy impacted buildings restored to commercial power; NYCHA suspends subsidies of Section 8 landlords who fail Post-Sandy inspections
The New York City Housing Authority has successfully restored its Sandy-impacted buildings to commercial power, no longer needing temporary generators to supply electricity. The last two NYCHA buildings (at Ocean Bay) were transitioned off generator power and over to commercial power (LIPA) this afternoon. All NYCHA residential buildings citywide are now back on commercial power. NYCHA continues to make steady progress in cleaning and bringing residents’ apartments back to normal from storm damage by Hurricane Sandy. NYCHA has inspected all of the 437 first-floor apartments that were above the flood line and may have been flooded, or suffered water damage, and will complete its assessment on how much remediation will be needed. In addition, NYCHA has gone door-to-door in all 26 Zone A developments to inspect apartments and provide cleaning services. The Housing Authority is also encouraging residents of any unit that sustained water damage as a result of Hurricane Sandy to contact NYCHA’s Customer Contact Center at 718-707-7771 and request inspection and cleaning services.
Also, beginning Nov. 18, NYCHA’s Leased Housing Department matched up buildings in Zone A that had failed Department of Buildings inspections; we proactively performed our own inspections to ensure the safety of the Section 8 voucher holders. Our inspectors found that 150 buildings still had not restored essential services such as lights, heat and elevator service. The landlords were given the standard 30-days to complete repairs, as well as personal phone calls from staff to confirm the status of the repairs. As of Dec. 20, there were 30 buildings that have not made the necessary repairs. As per HUD regulations, NYCHA has suspended the rent subsidy to those landlords, effective January 1, 2013. Tenants in those buildings where there continues to be no heat, hot water or elevator service can request an emergency transfer; and as long as they continue to pay their share of the rent, the landlord cannot evict the tenant because of the suspended subsidy payment. The Leased Housing Department will continue to follow up on the status of these buildings. To date, NYCHA has issued approximately 250 emergency transfers to Section 8 voucher holders who requested a transfer due to Hurricane Sandy.
The Housing Authority will have a final assessment, shortly. NYCHA will work with residents of these impacted homes to identify temporary housing solutions, if needed, pending the repair of their apartments. In some cases, NYCHA will offer a temporary or permanent transfer to residents in impacted apartments. NYCHA’s Family Services staff will provide coordination services, including child care services and assistance linking children to neighborhood schools.