The respective budgets provide for increased operating funds to implement new departmental initiatives. On May 11, 2016, the City Council Committee on Housing and Buildings and the Committee on Finance jointly held back-to-back public hearings on the Department of Buildings’ and the Department of Housing Preservation and Development’s Fiscal Year 2017 Executive Budgets, respectively, which seek to provide each Department with an increased budget to implement the new initiatives introduced within the respective Executive Budgets.
The Department of Housing Preservation and Development’s Executive Budget for Fiscal Year 2017 would provide the HPD with a total of $1.25 billion to cover its operating expenses, which is almost $500 million larger than HPD’s Adopted Budget for Fiscal Year 2016. The increased budget would enable HPD to support the new initiatives introduced in the Executive Budget, such as the East New York Homeowner Help Desk, which would support the Center for New York City Neighborhoods in providing foreclosure prevention services Citywide.
The Department of Buildings’ Executive Budget for Fiscal Year 2017 would provide Buildings with a total of $172.1 million, which is only slightly less than $20 million more than Buildings’ Adopted Budget for Fiscal Year 2016. Among other things, the increased capital would provide the requisite funding to implement the new Building One City initiative, which would facilitate the streamlining of Buildings’ online operations and enhance the efficiency of processing construction applications.
In a press release, Council Member Jumaane D. Williams, Deputy Leader and Chair of the Housing and Buildings Committee, stated that the “City’s housing crisis” has been the focus of his legislative efforts throughout this legislative session, and he is happy that the Council’s allocation of “funding for low-cost housing initiatives” evidences that the Council is also prioritizing affordable housing. “I look forward to working with the Administration on increasing deeper affordable housing projects in the City that offer options for lower-income New Yorkers,” said Council Member Williams.
City Council: Executive Budget Hearings – Housing and Buildings (May 11, 2016).
By: Jessica Soultanian-Braunstein (Jessica is the CityLaw Fellow and a New York Law School Graduate, Class of 2015)