May 25, 2023
NEW YORK – The following is a statement from Fabien Levy, press secretary to New York City Mayor Eric Adams, following the New York City Council’s vote this afternoon on a package of City Fighting Homelessness and Eviction Prevention Support (FHEPS) bills:
“Since day one of this administration, we have worked to shelter New Yorkers experiencing homelessness and connect our city’s residents with more permanent housing. That’s why earlier this year, we proposed to the City Council that we work together to remove the 90-day rule for families experiencing homelessness to connect them with housing vouchers faster. They rejected that proposal, and today passed a package of bills that will make it harder for New Yorkers experiencing homelessness to exit shelter to permanent housing. Nearly 20,000 existing voucher holders who cannot currently find housing because of the extremely low vacancy rate in our city would be lumped in with thousands more, including anyone who stops paying rent, for any reason, if they are below 50 percent of area median income. Put simply, these bills will keep New Yorkers experiencing homelessness, the ones who need permanent housing right now, in shelter for longer.
“Additionally, the City Council is adding $17 billion in costs over the next five years — something that is hard not to view as an attempt to force a tax increase on New Yorkers. To build a stronger city, we must connect more New Yorkers experiencing homelessness to housing, but these bills would stymie and effectively halt that process, something New Yorkers experiencing homelessness cannot afford. We are reviewing our options.”