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The Daily News on NYCHA

Monday, August 20, 2012

Jackson Houses resident in the Bronx, NYCHA, public housing Residents at Jackson Houses in the Bronx say they don't trust that law enforcement will protect them. (Stephen Nessen/WNYC)

New York's public housing authority is under fire for mismanagement at the highest levels. Arthur Browne, Daily News editorial page editor, discusses his paper's investigation into NYCHA finances and his meeting last week with NYCHA head John Rhea.



Guests:

Arthur Browne
News, weather, Radiolab, Brian Lehrer and more.
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Comments [13]

Michael from Brooklyn

The real problem of the huge apparently unmanageable bureaucracy of the NYCHA is that the public housing should not exist in the first place. How big a bureacracy does my apartment building need? One guy, the owner.

600K people in 400K apartments, being subsidized by local and federal taxpayers. That's everyone else. Maybe well meaning at first, but over the years inevitably becoming intergenerational sinkholes of disfunction and failure and crime. It's a solution to a problem that turned out to, to say the least, not work.

I live in an largely Chinese and others immigrant neighborhood in south Brooklyn. The nearby housing projects (calling them "Houses" does not make them houses) are populated exclusively by blacks and Hispanics. No self respecting Chinese or Russian or Middle Eastern people would think of living there, or laid off desperate white people either. They figure something else out. And they have mothers and fathers and grandparents,doing wonderful jobs raising their children, not single mothers mistreating their children one generation after another.

These projects are breeding grounds of cultural catastrophe. We should not be discussing how to manage them better. We should be getting rid of them as fast as we can.

Why was this segment was about fifteen minutes long with little no time for call ins and of course as usual no critical questiong from Leonard Lopate. It should have been an hour or two long at least. Housing projects are possibly the number one reason for our dismal record on socio-economic mobility.

Aug. 21 2012 01:32 AM
Louis Flores from Queens

How as the New York City Council kept NYCHA accountable ? If NYCHA has been obstructing an investigation or accountability, and the mayor is defending NYCHA, why can't the press and the poor turn to the New York City Council for support in holding NYCHA accountable ?

Aug. 20 2012 08:19 PM
gary from queens

@sheldon

Gov gave USPS monopoly status. the economic crisis was the result mostly, of unsustainable gov mortgage mandates

Aug. 20 2012 02:08 PM
Shirl

Ditto for the New York Court system.

Aug. 20 2012 01:28 PM
Sheldon from Brooklyn

Haha, so Uncle Mort thinks working class New Yorkers are all card carrying members of the Likud Party, are Repulican, and support stop and frisk?

Aug. 20 2012 11:46 AM
Anonymous from Anonymous

The media also needs to look at the changes that were made to the Capital Projects Division of NYCHA. Approximately 8 years ago there was a reorganization that started alotting alot of money to Contract Management firms to not do all that much more work than the in house public employees were doing . All in the name of efficiency. This was not accurate and a lot of government money has gone into private hands for not much work while the inhouse public union employees have been cut drastically. This change has brought about all the problems that you are seeing now. The agency was run much more efficiently and productively before this change.
The beginning phases of the privatization of a very large public agency.

Aug. 20 2012 11:42 AM
Leo from Queens

I'm very impressed with your guest and his understanding on the significance of public housing in terms of housing for the poor but also in terms of the value of these assets that are intentionally being allowed to deteriorate.
This is a crime.

The problem as your guest states is that the focus of Bloomberg has been to turn every single agency into a profit center without any regards to the mission and services for which these agencies exist in the first place and without regards to the long term effect on the City. His focus has been short term focused. Either make a profit or don't lose money so we can make our numbers look good - Who cares what happens after Bloomberg leaves office

Aug. 20 2012 11:38 AM
David from NYC

Wow...its not about bike lanes or telling us how much to drink
No wonder it's not on the radar of City hall.
Please please please ...if it's about the Highline or cutting off more streets to cars...he's not interested.

Aug. 20 2012 11:37 AM
fuva from harlemworld

The problem with NYCHA is that the consumers are intergenerationally poor and easy to neglect/ exploit. This waste of public money and resources is how society's injustices against a specific group ultimately affects all.

Aug. 20 2012 11:37 AM
RL

Is NYCHA like insurance - they make it hard to come by otherwise folks would never stop using it? If it were easy and nice, wouldn't everyone want it and not get off of it? Doesn't the mayor keep things at NYCHA houses run down to encourage people to leave?

Aug. 20 2012 11:36 AM
Leo from Queens

Why hasn't any of the 'media' outlets in the City - Including WNYC and the Daily News - done an analysis of the business 'reforms'that Bloomberg has introduced to City government in the past 11 years that he has had full control of all City government?

Other than replacing social promotions with bureocratic promotions in the school system and bringing in Enron accounting to make the education statistics look good, there have been no other reforms to City government. Bloomberg has been a disappointment and is leaving us with a bankrupt, dysfunctional government with more debt and a budget deficit for this and next year.

Aug. 20 2012 10:45 AM
Sheldon from Brooklyn

Gary - the govt does not run the post office. What about my cable company, RIM/Blackberry, Sony, Kodak, GM and the banks (before the bailout)?- All were either poorly run or had lost sizable market share by failing to adapt to the market.

My point is: Large organizations - public or private, tend to have efficiency problems when there is poor leadership and little accountability. The guy that runs NYCHA isn't a career bureaucrat, he worked on Wall Street, you would think things would have been better run under him.

Aug. 20 2012 10:16 AM
Gary from queens


Whether it's the housing authority, or the Post Office or Dept of Motor Vehicles, etc, can someone who supports government-run (i.e. rules made by HHS Secretary by fiat) healthcare explain where their optimism and trust comes from when government agencies run things?

Aug. 20 2012 09:51 AM

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