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#19

NYC Housing Authority Creates Few Jobs with Recovery Funds

On October 20, Community Voices Heard's public housing campaign released a new report highlighting, the  $423 million in Recovery Act funds that the NYC Housing Authority (NYCHA) received to make capital improvements, such as replacing elevators, roofs, boilers, and making buildings more energy efficient. The report focused on NYCHA's responsibility under federal "Section 3" regulations to provide job opportunities for public housing residents and community members with these types of federal funds. 

The report, "Bad Arithmetic: The Failure of New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) Recovery Funds to Create Jobs for Local Residents," shows that too few jobs were created for residents with the Recovery Act funding. 

CVH also conducted a survey to better understand how familiar NYCHA residents are with the housing authority's responsibilities to create jobs.  Through the collection of over 300 surveys from housing developments around New York City, CVH found that the vast majority of NYCHA residents surveyed were not informed about job opportunities, nor did they see stimulus work being done in their development. When NYCHA has received similar funding in the past, work had not been completed, contractors performed sub-standard work that required more repairs within a short amount of time, and money disappeared or had been diverted elsewhere.

Roxanne Reid, CVH member and Tenant Association President of Castle Hill Houses in the Bronx, said while participating in the release of the report that she has sent over 30 residents to NYCHA Resident Employment Services to receive training, but that NYCHA, "was telling Castle Hill folks the classes were filled. This was good but unfortunately, many of these people who received training now say to me 'Ms. Reed, when can I get a job?' It's not easy telling them, there is none."

CVH members called on NYCHA to ensure that 30% of the hours worked on projects funded with federal money are by public housing residents, not the current, weaker standard that permits just 30% of new hires to be residents or community members. They also called for expanded transparency at NYCHA and that the authority set aside a portion of the capital budget for residents to allocate through a participatory budget process.

Read the full report here, the press release, or coverage in The Epoch Times here.

 

By NYSA on Thursday, October 21, 2010 at 11:32 AM

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#13

Resources

This page will be populated with a number of resources prepared by and prepared for member organizations of NYSA. If you are visiting and have questions about any of these documents or would like to see additional resources added, contact ChrisNYSA@gmail.com.

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Kirwan Institute Analyzes Recovery Act in NYS
October 2010: The Kirwan Institute and NYSA jointly released a report in October called "Where's the Stimulus: State and Regional profiles of the Recovery Act Investment in New York State." The report highlights the allocation of federal Recovery Act investments statewide, identifying geographic distribution of funds as well as specific populations that have benefited. The report finds that Recovery Act funding has been of critical importance to help New York weather the economic storm by maintaining services and getting many New Yorkers back to work. Read the full report here and see highlights and color maps below.
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A few key facts and findings emerged from the study:
     - The State of New York will receive $29.4 billion in Federal Stimulus funds which will be allocated for use by the end of fiscal year 2011.
     - As of June 30, 2010, recipients reported on $9.7 billion of these funds, which resulted in the creation of 170,018 jobs, according to Recovery.gov.  This is the sum of four quarterly reports and not a cumulative total.  Due to the methodology used, some ongoing jobs may be re-reported.
     - One of every five dollars that came to New York State came in the form of direct payments to individuals, such as unemployment payments of Pell Grants.
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Several populations such as Native American- and White-owned businesses are deriving an especially high benefit from federal contract work to be performed in New York State while others, such as Latino-owned and Black-owned business, are deriving a disproportionately low benefit.
     - While Native Americans comprise less than 1 percent of business owners in New York state, they received over 11 percent of all stimulus contracts in the state, and nearly 9 percent of the contract dollars. Most of these contracts were for construction work at Fort Drum in Jefferson County, awarded by the Department of Defense.
     - A disproportionately large majority of business contracts, in terms of both number of contracts and the value of contracts, went to white-owned businesses - both statewide and in the city of New York. White-owned businesses represent 76.3 percent of New York businesses but they received over 85 percent of the Recovery Act contract dollars for work conducted in the state.
     - Conversely, Black- and Latino- and Asian-owned businesses received a disproportionately low share of these contracts and contract dollars.  Statewide, black- and Latino-owned and Asian-owned businesses each represent about 10 percent of business owners.  But they received no more than 5 percent of the Recovery Act contracts and no more than 4 percent of the contract dollars.
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Of the $29.4 billion in stimulus funds flowing into the state, $9.3 billion is expected to flow to New York City targets.  Chief uses of the funds New York City receives between 2009 and 2011 will include: 
     - $3.3 billion to stabilize local government and school district budgets
     - $2.9 billion to individuals as food stamps, unemployment benefits and Pell grant
     - $689 million to public infrastructure projects
     - $2.3 billion to other investments such as homelessness prevention.
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REGIONAL MAPS OF RECOVERY ACT INVESTMENTS
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Albany
   - Profile & Map
Buffalo
   - Map (profile coming soon!)
Newburgh
   - Profile & Map
New York City
   - NYC profile
   - Brooklyn map
   - Bronx map
   - Manhanttan map
   - Queens map
   - Staten Island map
Niagara
   - Map (profile coming soon!)
Poughkeepsie
   - Profile & Map
Syracuse
   - Map (profile coming soon!)
Yonkers
   - Profile & Map

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HOW WE GOT HERE: AN OVERVIEW OF THE CRISIS

August 2010: Common Cause/NY prepared the following slideshow that outlines the financial crisis and the state of affairs in New York State for a town hall forum in Downtown Brooklyn..
 


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FINDING MORE: A FEW RESOURCES

NYS Recovery Cabinet has a lot of useful information about most programs that got Recovery act funding in NYS.  It also has a very useful breakdown of how much each county is expected to get over the first two years of the Recovery Act broken down by program.
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NYS Stimulus Oversight Panel is chaired by the State Inspector General, who is joined by the State's Inspectors General for Medicaid and the MTA, as well as the Commissioner of the Division of Human Rights.  They issue quarterly reports looking at waste, fraud, and abuse under the Recovery Act in NYS, as well as investigations into human rights and equal opportunity violations.
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Recovery.gov is where reports by many recipients of Recovery Act funding are made available regarding how much has been received and used, how many jobs are created and more. The New York State Summary is also a useful overview.
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The Government Accountability Office also specifically oversees the spending in 16 states, including New York.  The GAO issues bi-monthly reports on its work, which can be .
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By NYSA on Friday, July 30, 2010 at 6:45 PM

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