City Shifts Funding to Address Urgent Affordable Housing Needs

Mayor Bill de Blasio. Image credit: CityLand

$466 million moved back into the 2021 Fiscal Year’s capital budget. On October 22, 2020, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced the acceleration of capital funding within the City’s affordable housing plan by shifting $466 million to the current fiscal year’s capital budget to address urgent affordable housing needs. In March, the City moved $466 million from the Department of Housing Preservation and Developments Fiscal Year 2021 budget to the Fiscal Years 2022 through 2024. However, following the COVID-19 pandemic and the need to support the ongoing recovery efforts, the Department moved these funds back to Fiscal Year 2021. After this shift, the City would have invested $1.4 billion in affordable housing this year. This funding acceleration keeps the Housing New York project on track to create and preserve 300,000 affordable homes by 2026.

The Department of Housing Preservation and Development has continued to support current projects focusing on developments that serve vulnerable residents and communities. This past summer, Mayor de Blasio announced that the City had financed 30,023 affordable homes in the last fiscal year, and to date, the City has financed almost 166,000 affordable homes. These homes include projects such as the 1921 Atlantic Avenue in Bed-Stuy, Brooklyn, 461 Alabama Avenue in Brooklyn. and the Victory Commons in the Bronx. Of these newly financed homes, 44% serve extremely low and very-low income families, those earning less than $30,720 or $51, 200 for a family of three, respectively.

The Department of Housing Preservation and Development has preserved three properties across the Bronx and in Carrol Gardens, Brooklyn through the Neighborhood Pillars program, which helps mission-driven organizations acquire and rehabilitate properties. Half of these newly preserved units will remain permanently affordable, and 30% of the units will be set-aside for eligible homeless tenants, helping to ensure these buildings remain anchors of affordable housing for their communities into the future.

In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, the City is keenly focused on housing that contributes to the well-being of New York by ensuring there is broadband connectivity in new construction projects as well as community facilities that bring health services, recreational opportunities, and outdoor space.

Speaking on the project, Department of Housing Preservation and Development Commissioner Louise Carroll said: “the administration has made affordable housing a priority since day one, and especially in the critical moment, we are grateful for the additional funding. With these restored funds, we’ll be foraging ahead on the goals of Housing New York with an even sharper focus on protecting the most vulnerable among us – New Yorkers at the lowest income levels, our seniors, those experiencing homelessness – and helping make this city a more equitable place by supporting … nonprofit projects as well as those neighborhoods hit hard by COVID-19.”

By: Lynsey Smith (Lynsey is the CityLaw fellow and a New York Law School student, Class of 2022.)


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