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Public Housing Residents Demand $5 Billion in State Funding

Tenants and advocates say the funding would repair 25,000 apartments and help cover outstanding rent arrears accumulated during the COVID-19 pandemic.

New York City Housing Authority tenants joined public housing advocates on a day trip to Albany this week, demanding billions of dollars in state funding to repair tens of thousands of apartments and prevent evictions for unpaid rent.They joined residents from housing authorities across the state at the Capitol building Tuesday to press for $4.5 billion for repairs over the next five years. The funds, advocates say, must be used to fix and maintain developments plagued by conditions like mold, leaks and asbestos.

Tenants are seeking another $500 million this year to help clear rent arrears. On the Million Dollar Staircase, a chorus of more than 20 voices chanted, “If we don’t get it, shut it down!”With $3.55 billion of the capital repairs pot, advocates say NYCHA could rehabilitate 15,000 public housing units in New York City. Another $930 million could repair 10,000 apartments elsewhere around the state. 

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