BK Lawmakers React To NYCHA Chair Resignation
City Council member Jumaane Williams (D-Flatbush, East Flatbush, Midwood) and Assembly members Nicole Malliotakis (South Brooklyn, Staten Island) and Steven Cymbrowitz (D-Sheepshead Bay, Manhattan Beach, Brighton Beach) reacted to the resignation of New York City Public Housing Authority (NYCHA) Head Shola Olatoye yesterday.
On Tuesday, Olatoye announced her departure from the embattled authority in the midst of multiple controversies in recent months related to fraudulent lead inspections and a heating crisis that left some 320,000 of the 390,000 public housing residents without heat or hot water this past Winter. While the city searches for a replacement, Mayor Bill de Blasio named Stan Brezenoff as the interim NYCHA Chair. Brezenoff has previously worked at the Port Authority and as the interim CEO of New York City Health + Hospitals.
“If Ms. Olatoye felt that she was no longer the most effective person to serve in the role of NYCHA Chair, then it was right for her to step down. The problems faced at NYCHA, the problems that tenants have struggled with for years, are not the responsibility of a single person or even a single administration. New leadership alone cannot solve the crises. New commitment of funding, and a promise of prioritization from the state level down, is at the core of any lasting and meaningful reform that NYCHA tenants demand and deserve,” said Williams.
“Olatoye’s actions were negligent, unethical and I believe criminal. The fact that Mayor de Blasio turned a blind eye to her mismanagement of the agency that provides housing for nearly 400,000 residents for this long shows his lack of leadership and disregard for the citizens he represents. Sadly, this is not the first de Blasio administration agency head to leave due to incompetence or under an unethical cloud. However, the silver lining is that today’s resignation provides new hope for New Yorkers who pay 1/3 of their income to live in Public housing and deserve to live in dignity,” said Malliotakis.
“As Chair of the Assembly’s Housing Committee, it has been my pleasure to work with Shola Olatoye in our shared mission to ensure that NYCHA’s 400,000 residents have a safe and decent place to call home. She reset relationships between NYCHA and elected officials and between NYCHA and tenants. The much-needed infusion of hope that she brought to NYCHA, and the foundation she built to ensure that the next generations of low-income New Yorkers will be able to depend on public housing, will be an important part of her legacy,” said Cymbrowitz.
Jeffries, Persaud To Host Starrett City Sale Town Hall
Congressman Hakeem Jeffries (D-Fort Greene, Clinton Hill, Bedford-Stuyvesant, Canarsie, East New York, Mill Basin, Bergen Beach, Coney Island) alongside State Senator Roxanne Persaud (D-Canarsie, East New York, Brownsville, Mill Basin, Sheepshead Bay, Bergen Beach, Marine Park, Flatlands, Mill Island, Georgetown, Ocean Hill, Starrett City) will host a Town Hall this week to discuss the change in ownership of Starrett City this week.
Earlier this year, the massive East New York housing complex was approved for sale for $905 million.The sale will still have to be cleared by state officials and the Trump administration (the president has a four percent stake in the complex), but it is expected to receive approval soon.
The East New York complex, opened in 1974, is the largest federally subsidized housing development in the nation. Earlier this year, Jeffries vowed to keep the complex affordable, citing current state law that states the development must remain affordable through the year 2039. Thereafter, any owner can charge market rate value, possibly displacing many of its 14,000 residents. A panel of legal and policy experts will also be on hand to answer questions.
The town hall will address resident concerns including displacement, rent changes, property maintenance and overall quality of life issues.
The event is slated for 3 p.m., Sunday, April 15, at Brooklyn Sports Club, at 1540 Van Siclen Avenue in East New York. All attendees are asked to RSVP here.
Adams, Hamilton Fight Against Gun Violence
Brooklyn Borough President Eric L. Adams and State Senator Jesse Hamilton (D-Central Brooklyn) alongside District Leader Geoffrey Davis will hosts an Emergency Public Safety Town Hall this week.
The event will address the recent string of shootings in the Prospect-Lefferts-Gardens area and the safety issues associated with preventing further harm in the area.
Most recently, a couple was killed in a home invasion robbery last Wednesday evening, said police. According to reports, a neighbor says he saw a woman without shoes and holding a baby running out of the Winthrop Street house where the incident occurred, desperately searching for a phone. He says he believes it is the daughter and granddaughter of the couple who was fatally stabbed.
A 59-year-old woman, identified as Hazel Brown, was found inside the house, and 65-year-old Stephenson Bonaparte was found lying face down outside. Currently, no arrests have been made.
The event is slated for 6:30 p.m., Thursday, April 12, at Grace Reformed Church, at 1800 Bedford Avenue (Lefferts Ave. & Lincoln Rd.) in Prospect-Lefferts-Gardens.
Cymbrowitz Demands Probe Into ‘Floating Orgy’ In Sheepshead Bay
Assembly member Steven Cymbrowitz (D-Sheepshead Bay, Manhattan Beach, Brighton Beach) is calling for an investigation into an alleged ‘floating orgy’ held on a party boat in Sheepshead Bay recently.
According to an article by The Independent, one of Sheepshead Bay’s party boats recently served as the venue of an event called Chemistry, which bills itself as “New York’s private, bi-monthly sex party.” These parties are allegedly known to take place across the city and this particular event took place on a “private yacht” that cruised around Sheepshead Bay.
As a result, on Tuesday, Cymbrowitz wrote to Mayor Bill de Blasio and the State Liquor Authority asking them to investigate the possible sex party cruises. The lawmakers has been leading the effort to control the quality-of- life issues associated with the party boats, such as excessive noise and crowds, passengers urinating on residents’ lawns, traffic congestion and occasional fights.
“In addition to the obvious objection – that it is unacceptable to have floating orgies associated with our residential, family-oriented community – an event of this nature prompts questions of excessive alcohol use in addition to the possibility of illegal drugs,” wrote Cymbrowitz.
“I ask that you investigate this matter further and, at the same time, prohibit Sheepshead Bay’s party boats from hosting this type of event anytime in the future,” said Cymbrowitz.
Geoffrey Davis Holds Emergency Town Hall
Democratic District Leader Geoffrey Davis, in conjunction with Brooklyn District Attorney Eric Gonzalez, Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams, State Sen. Jesse Hamilton and Democratic District Leader Shirley Patterson will hold an emergency town hall meeting tomorrow to confront a string of shooting in Prospect Lefferts Gardens.
The town hall is slated for 6:30 p.m., tomorrow, April 12 at the Grace Reformed Church, 1800 Bedford Avenue (between Lefferts Avenue and Lincoln Road) in Prospect Lefferts Gardens.