Lynne Patton

Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports

HUD Official Lynne Patton: NYCHA Conditions Are A ‘Humanitarian Crisis’

March 22, 2019 - 7:40 pm
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NEW YORK (WCBS 880) — New York City House Authority residents found themselves in the middle of a political fight when federal housing official Lynne Patton bashed Mayor Bill de Blasio on Friday for putting everything else above tenants.

In an interview with CBS2, Patton accused the mayor and NYCHA officials of committing fraud and trying to deceive federal inspectors.

The HUD official made her comments after wrapping up a 30-day tour of the city’s public housing facilities, in which she lived in a NYCHA apartment to see first-hand the crumbling conditions.

“I saw rats, I saw roaches, I saw lead paint, I saw black mold, I saw raw sewage dripping down the walls. It is incredibly inhumane… nothing short of a humanitarian crisis,” she told CBS2.

She said the agency was wasting federal resources.

“Where is the $30 million a week that the federal government gives to NYCHA and the city for the residents repairs going? Because it’s certainly not going to the residents for repairs,” she continued.

She claimed that de Blasio was distracted by his presidential ambitions and cited as proof the fact he had still not appointed a new NYCHA chief.

Criminal charges were called for, Patton espoused.

“They literally had a cheat sheet on how to pass a physical from HUD,” Patton said. “Paint cardboard so it looked like tile. These are crimes, it’s not something that’s an innocent gesture. That’s a cheat sheet on how to commit crimes.”

Republican Assemblywoman Nicole Malliotakis, who represents Staten Island, also joined Patton’s calls Friday after touring two facilities in the borough.

“The mayor and his administration need to make the effort to come out to these facilities and see what we’ve been seeing,” she said.

She said the mayor is fully responsible for the disparities of NYCHA residents, claiming he ignored complaints and mismanaged funds.

“The money seems to go on a black hole, like every other agency this mayor runs,” Malliotakis said.

De Blasio vehemently countered the insinuations, claiming Patton is peddling lies and that the Trump administration wants to cut funding for public housing.

The battle was ongoing Friday, all while NYCHA residents continued to find themselves stuck in the same deteriorating conditions.

“All these people need help in some way and not all of them can be heard,” said one woman.

She says she’s lived in a NYCHA building on Staten Island for 16 years and there's plenty that needs fixing, if only someone would listen.