NYCHA Tenants Left out of Over $2 Billion in New York Emergency Rental Assistance NYCHA Tenants Facing $485 Million in Arrears
Read Letter Here
Washington D.C. – RealEstateRama – Congressman Dan Goldman (NY-10) today joined fellow members of the New York delegation in calling for New York State lawmakers to include emergency rental assistance for NYCHA in the State’s final budget for FY 2024. Congressman Goldman joined Congresswoman Nydia M. Velázquez (NY-7), Congresswoman Yvette Clarke (NY-9), Congresswoman Grace Meng (NY-6), and Congressman Ritchie Torres (NY-15) in writing a letter to Governor Kathy Hochul, Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins, and Speaker Carl Heastie urging them to support NYCHA tenants. While New York State received more than $2.29 billion in funds to prevent mass evictions, the State Legislature listed public housing residents and residents receiving rent subsidies as the lowest priority to receive rental assistance. This priority ranking resulted in public housing and section 8 tenants receiving zero funds for rental assistance.
“We are encouraged to see that the State Assembly and the State Senate have both included rental assistance funding for Public Housing and Section 8 tenants in their one-house budgets to relieve the aforementioned issues,” wrote the lawmakers. “As you proceed with your budget negotiations, we urge that the Executive and Legislature come together to support our common constituents and the housing authorities that serve them by including important emergency rental assistance funding in the State’s final budget for FY 2024.”
In early 2020, the Federal government established the Emergency Rental Assistance Program (ERAP) to help American renters avoid eviction. In total, ERAP provided state, territorial, tribal, and local governments with more than $46 billion to support housing stability. Through two separate disbursements, the State of New York received more than $2.29 billion to keep New Yorkers in their homes. ERAP eligibility requires that a member of the household received unemployment benefits or experienced a reduction in income, incurred significant costs or experienced financial hardship, directly or indirectly, due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Unfortunately, the state did not prioritize Public Housing Authority (PHA) and Section 8 residents when disbursing these funds. As a result, many of these residents face insurmountable delinquent rent bills that may lead to eviction. NYCHA residents are believed to have amassed $485 million in delinquent rent. Despite applying for $128 million in ERA relief, NYCHA tenants have received no assistance. This situation has forced PHAs to consider cutting services and staff, as they rely on rental payments to balance their budgets.