The de Blasio administration put out the following statement on Monday:
"Due to local opposition to housing homeless New Yorkers, we have not been able to convert this site into a full shelter at this time. We are renting rooms for employed single adults and providing onsite services and security.”Then they didn't like the coverage that they received, which indicated that they caved. So they hastily arranged a press conference in the lobby of City Hall where Steven Banks answered questions. He said the following:
"We moved forward with our plan to put homeless New Yorkers in Maspeth last night. The property owner would not permit us to go forward with our full plan to use the full building."Now, our blog has pointed the following out before, but it's worth revisiting.
According to the city's own RFP, they
1) do not target specific neighborhoods in which to open shelters and
2) the city reviews RFP responses from service providers and makes a determination
In order to meet its legal obligations DHS maintains an open-ended Request for Proposal process through which non-profit social service providers submit proposals to augment capacity. Although DHS does not target specific areas to open shelters, the agency strives to keep families near their communities as much as possible. This is an open-ended request for proposals, therefore, there is no prescribed due date for submissions. All suitable proposals will be reviewed by the agency on an ongoing basis as received.
Yet in Maspeth, the city held 2 public hearings and announced an opening date for a shelter before they had a viable RFP response from Acacia Network. Then they tried to pressure the owner after he said he wasn't interested. So they most certainly targeted Maspeth and broke their own rules for siting shelters.