Village of Great Neck Housing Authority gets $60k in federal money for capital fund

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Village of Great Neck Housing Authority gets $60k in federal money for capital fund
The Village of Great Neck Housing Authority. (Photo from Google Maps)

U.S. senators Charles Schumer and Kristen Gillibrand announced on Friday the acquisition of nearly $400 million for housing authorities in New York State, including $60,279 for the Village of Great Neck Housing Authority.

While the $60,279 is a small chunk of the $400 million, every bit of money counts for the Village of Great Neck Housing Authority as it figures out how to do more with less.

The money goes towards building improvements and repairs like light replacements. The federal money secured last year for the capital fund was $60,190, a difference of less than $100.

The amount of money provided has been relatively consistent the last few years, but used to be much higher in the early 2000s, according to the Housing Authority.

“I will tell you that that number ‘60,000’, which has been pretty consistent over the last [few] years, was reduced from years back,” said Ellen Schuchman, assistant housing project manager. “One year was $95,000, another was $97,000.”

“It’s been, pretty much, a steady decline,” Schuchman added.

Federal subsidies for the facility have also declined. Schuchman, who has worked there for 16 years, could recall a time where their monthly operating subsidy was around $60,000. Now they are between $10,000 and $11,000, she said.

The Village of Great Neck Housing Authority’s facility features 74 studio and one-bedroom apartments for low-income residents 62 and older. Because some couples live together, Schuchman estimates roughly 90 people live there.

The waiting list, however, features many more people both inside the village and nearby waiting for housing there.

“The current approximate waiting time… Right now it’s running about six years for residents of Great Neck. There’s hundreds of people,” Schuchman said, noting an increase in demand for public affordable housing.

“Outside of Great Neck, it’s longer or never,” she added.

To compensate for lower support and higher demand, Schuchman noted they have used their reserve funds for the first time.

“These people are at the very forefront of where budgets are being cut back or being proposed to be cutback,” Schuchman said.

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