In the end of session whirlwind in Albany, in which a host of progressive reforms were enacted, public housing’s funding win flew under everyone’s radar. On the last day of session, a capital budget was passed which includes an additional $100 million in capital funding for NYCHA and $20 million for public housing agencies outside of NYC. Hopefully, this funding is released swiftly with the $450M in previously appropriated state funds.
While $120 million is far less than what is needed and much less than proposed in 1-house budget bills, this funding is a recognition of NY State’s ongoing responsibility to ensure decent and safe living conditions for public housing residents. A missed opportunity this year was the chance to reform the condo / coop tax abatement to provide an additional long-term revenue stream to NYCHA. The Legislature passed a 2 year extender of NYC’s 2nd largest real estate tax expenditure which provides outsized benefits to owners of luxury real estate. While we support renewing tax benefits for the low- and middle-income condo and coop homeowners, we are disappointed that NYCHA missed out on an additional $170 million that our proposed reform would have redirected from luxury homeowners. This money could have bonded for $3.3 billion, which would have gone a long way in helping close NYCHA’s capital needs gap.