UNHP Spring/Summer 2016 Newsletter

There have been so many sad and tragic incidents in recent weeks, that it has made writing an adequate intro to our latest e-newsletter impossible. We continue to have faith that the work we do at UNHP is valuable and meaningful to the improvement of the quality of life for people in the neighborhoods of the Northwest Bronx. We continue to believe that, as they have in the past, people from neighborhoods working together can accomplish amazing things. Thus our efforts continue as does our pledge to work harder with hope and faith to preserve affordable housing and to strengthen economic and personal opportunities for neighborhood people.

UNHP has had significant accomplishments in our work to preserve affordable housing and work with neighborhood residents this spring and summer. We refinanced a 31 unit multifamily building insuring its affordability for another 48 years, improved 13 multifamily buildings with
°COOL white roofs and have been working with a group of Bronx family daycare providers as they fight for their businesses. Despite a recent glitch, UNHP is proud of our role in the creation of a 10M water and sewer rate discount program for affordable housing.

UNHP completed 13 °CoolRoofs on top of affordable housing buildings just in time for the hot summer weather. °CoolRoofs provide year-round sealant protection and help buildings stay cooler in the summer.

In our May 23rd blog, UNHP announced the NYC Water Board's vote on 2016 water rates which included the Multifamily Water Rate Program, which offers a $250 per apartment per year discount for affordable multifamily housing. Maybe we had a premonition because we said that we did not want to celebrate prematurely. Due to the June 22 Manhattan Supreme Court’s injunction against the Water Board's 2016-17 rate increase package, the entire rate increase package including the Multifamily Water Rate Program has been put on hold. The Wall Street Journal reports that the court will not hear the case until September. We are hopeful that this is short term setback and that subsequent to the court case; the program will be back in place. For more information on the current status of the program, read our most recent blog post.

On July 5th, fifteen home-based daycare providers met with NYS Senator Gustavo Rivera at Concourse House to discuss their businesses. The group known as Bronx Providers United/ Proveedoras Unidas del Bronx is made up of about 30 licensed family and group family daycare providers, some who have been in business for over 15 years. The daycare providers engaged with the Senator in English and Spanish, and discussed the need to increase the number of subsidized vouchers and slots for low-income working families, raise the reimbursement rate and obtain better benefits. The Providers shared information from the Agency of Children’s Services (ACS) that only 23% of infants and 17% of toddlers from eligible families can obtain subsided childcare in the Bronx. The Providers also shared a recent study by the Children’s Defense Fund that reported about 90% of childcare providers interviewed made less than $25,000. This information was confirmed by a recent UNHP survey which indicated that the majority of childcare providers surveyed did not earn minimum wage for the 50 + hours they work – opening early and staying late to accommodate working families. Bronx Providers United plans to keep moving forward not only to fight for the children in their care, but also to advocate for their businesses, which provide safe, quality care, local jobs, and economic vitality in their Bronx communities. 


For most people affordable housing is the housing they live in now – helping Bronx residents remain in their homes is a focus for the UNHP Northwest Bronx Resource Center in 2016/17. The NYC Rent Freeze Program recently raised their income guidelines which makes more low –income seniors and people with disabilities eligible for the Senior Citizen Rent Increase Exemption (SCRIE) and the Disability Rent Increase Exemption (DRIE). This map created by LiveOn NY shows that more than 50% of seniors and people with disabilities in our communities of Kingsbridge, Kingsbridge Heights, Bedford, Fordham, and Mosholu may be eligible for this rent freeze. Thanks to a generous grant from Citi, UNHP will begin regular outreach and application assistance for SCRIE and DRIE at the Northwest Bronx Resource Center.

Finally, we would like to invite you to UNHP’s 2016 Bronx Beer Hall Fundraiser on Wednesday, September 14th from 6:30 to 9:30 pm. Mark your calendars, go to this Eventbrite link to buy your tickets and consider getting your Company’s name on our glass as a sponsor this year. The deadline for becoming a sponsor and getting your company's name on the glass is August 17th, 2016.

For more information and photos of our work, please check out our Twitter, Facebook and Tumblr

Thank you to all our partners who have joined us in our work.

On behalf of the Staff and Board of UNHP,

James Buckley
Copyright © 2016 University Neighborhood Housing Program, All rights reserved.

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