On Tuesday, August 8, 2023, the New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) Federal Monitor, Bart M. Schwartz, and the monitoring team’s Resident Engagement Team Leader, Asha Muldro, hosted a virtual meeting of the Community Advisory Committee (CAC). The meeting was live streamed on the NYCHA Monitor YouTube channel. A copy of the agenda is available here.
During his opening remarks, Mr. Schwartz thanked everyone for attending and noted the importance of this group to continue to meet regularly because their input provides the monitoring team valuable assistance.
Ms. Muldro opened the meeting by going through the agenda items and asked the CAC members to provide their updates while keeping a focus on resident engagement.
- Regional Administrator for Region II, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, Alicka Ampry-Samuel reported on the recent visits to NYCHA housing developments by HUD Secretary Marcia Fudge in which she met with NYCHA CEO, Lisa Bova-Hiatt, to learn more about the housing issues in the New York City area;residents in the developments; and the City Wide Counsel of Presidents. Ms. Ampry-Samuel also announced that HUD’s Assistant Secretary, Julia R. Gordon, will be visiting the area next week to tour NYCHA buildings, meet with resident association presidents, and attend Family Days.
- NYCHA Special Counsel, Mehrnoosh Torbatnejad, informed members on the progress of the new Capital Tracker which will be launched sometime in the Fall. The updated version will include a demo on how to use the tracker, how to find projects, and how to navigate to the projects page. She noted that NYCHA will conduct product demos at properties with project managers, as well as with council members.
- NYCHA Manager, Resident Participation & Civic Engagement, Samantha Rogers, presented an organizational chart of the department’s reorganization and emphasized the reporting structure within the boroughs which includes Neighborhood Services Coordinators that are field based and assigned to specific communities within one borough. The presentation included an overview of NYCHA’s Resident Participation and Civic Engagement mission. Ms. Rogers added that Resident Participation & Civic Engagement meets weekly with the Citywide Council of Presidents to determine additional areas that needs to be addressed including a resident code-of-conduct.
- Community Partnerships Director, Brownsville Partnership, Noelle Meyers-Powell, gave a presentation about the organization including a project they did with Seth Low Houses to address priority repairs. The project was done in conjunction with resident input.
- Fire Department of the City of New York Battalion Chief, Michael Thomson, provided an update on the key fobs including the issuance of fobs to emergency medical services units and the release of a video. The FDNY is also working on a hard key distribution for all departments,
- NYCHA’s Vice President for Public Safety and Security, James Secreto, noted that he and his team continue to do walk-throughs of the housing units; they are updating a safety plan, and he is representing NYCHA on a city-wide gun violence prevention task force.
- New York Police Department Captain, Charles Haren, advised members of the latest crime statistics within housing developments and noted that grand larceny automotive thefts are raising the percentage of the crime rate. He also announced that the NYPD is posting social media communications with tips on personal security and encouraged residents to subscribe to the NYPD’s social media sites.
- Williams Plaza Resident Association President, Joel Gross, made several recommendations related to safety and security concerns.
- South Jamaica Resident Association President, Manny Martinez, emphasized the importance of NYCHA working with resident leaders pursuant to regulations.
- Gun Hill Houses Resident Association President, Robert Hall, wanted confirmation that resident association presidents receive communications about all community meetings and CAC meetings. Ms. Muldro confirmed that the monitor team sends meeting notifications via e-mail to all resident association presidents and also calls the Presidents in a particular borough in advance of their community meeting.
Ms. Muldro announced the next meetings:
- Bronx Community Meeting, Tuesday, September 12, 2023 (in-person)
- CAC Meeting, Tuesday, October 17.
She also recommended residents not to wait until one of these meetings if they are experiencing issues. They should contact the monitor:
- email: [email protected]
- Phone: 347.809.5555 or 844.309.6080
In his closing remarks, Mr. Schwartz indicated the success of the in-person Queens community meeting.