Wednesday, February 5, 2020
Today, we released the Third Quarterly Report which covers our work on the areas and obligations in the January 31, 2019 Agreement from October 1 – December 31, 2019. During this time, we continued to assist NYCHA with meeting the requirements of the Agreement to ensure safe and sanitary housing.
One such requirement is the creation of action plans that provide measurable, detailed steps as to how NYCHA intends to remedy various problems and better manage its operations. We have approved NYCHA’s action plans for heat, PHAS inspections, the use of $450 million in state reimbursement funds, and most recently, elevators. It is the Monitor’s role to oversee the implementation of changes driven by the requirements of the action plans, but also to provide constructive and innovative solutions that can improve quality of life for NYCHA residents.
Last May, the Monitor team began exploring the use of drones to conduct building inspections and expedite repairs needed on roofs and building exteriors. Drones would reduce both the need for sidewalk bridges and scaffolding and the length of time they remain in place. Expedited repairs and removing scaffolding would also improve safety at developments and save millions of dollars that NYCHA currently spends to rent the scaffolds. (Watch the Monitor’s Third Quarterly Report Video on the Use of Drones here).
In this report you can also read about our work on the following: 1) improved use of data and metrics to employ resources more efficiently, 2) creation of a new NYCHA Waste Management Department and pilot programs with the residents, 3) transformation of NYCHA’s organizational structure 4) expenditure of state reimbursement funds for new boilers and elevators, and 5) Quality Assurance, Environmental Health & Safety, and Compliance departments, among other things.
There are significant areas, however, in which NYCHA has not made sufficient progress to comply with the Agreement’s directives. In these situations we work closely with HUD, the City, and SDNY to move NYCHA in the right direction. I will continue to use my oversight to ensure that NYCHA commits to step-by-step written strategies – not just vague promises – demonstrating how it will accomplish specific performance targets under the Agreement.
Very truly yours,
Bart M. Schwartz
Federal Monitor appointed pursuant to Agreement dated January 31, 2019