Gov. Cuomo just doesn’t get the New York City Housing Authority, Mayor de Blasio insisted Friday.
De Blasio fired back at comments made by Cuomo Thursday, in which he argued the struggling public housing authority’s problem was management — not money. Both men made their comments on WNYC’s Brian Lehrer Show, a day apart.
“He alleged that he was very familiar with the inner workings of NYCHA, that’s just not the whole truth,” de Blasio said. “I’ve talked to him a lot of times about NYCHA he does not evince a detailed understanding of what’s happening there.”
Cuomo was secretary of Housing and Urban Development — which oversees NYCHA — during the Clinton administration, and hired de Blasio to run the New York-New Jersey region, which was responsible for funding the agency.
Cuomo says mismanagement is NYCHA’s biggest problem
Hizzoner insisted it was “specious” to argue that money wasn’t an issue at NYCHA.
“It’s ridiculous for the governor to suggest that an agency that now has somewhere over $20 billion — in that latest estimate — over $20 billion in physical needs that money is not part of the problem,” he said.
And it’s an argument he said the governor has made before on other subjects, like schools.
“Of course it’s about money. You can’t make our schools as good as they could be without money, you can’t make public housing what it should be if $20 billion is missing,” he said.
De Blasio, Cuomo spar over NYCHA’s lead paint fails, heat outages
While de Blasio has often noted the state has control of the MTA, Cuomo has noted that the city has control of NYCHA, though it is largely federally funded.
“The fact is the state committed $250 million to NYCHA, voted on by the state legislature, signed by the governor. That money has never arrived,” de Blasio said.
But the governor’s office argues that’s not true — and that $200 million has been approved but not dispersed as they await a plan from the city showing how NYCHA will actually spend the money. Another $100 million was allocated in the 2016 state fiscal year, the state said, and nearly $90 million was spent on projects that are complete or in progress, the state said.
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