Quinn Says Vacancy Study Too Expensive
September 29th, 2010

Council Speaker Christine Quinn rejected a proposal today being pushed by anti-homelessness advocates to survey vacant buildings throughout the city, calling it “enormously expensive.”

The measure, based off a similar law in Boston, would require the city take an inventory of all of its vacant buildings and lots every year. Advocates hope those spaces would then be used as temporary housing for the homeless.

“Collecting that data is enormously expensive,” Quinn said, putting the cost at “millions of dollars.” In tough fiscal times, she added, “that money may be better spent assisting the homeless.”

Just outside of the Emigrant Industrial Savings Bank, the council’s temporary home, members of Picture the Homeless, the group pushing the measure, gathered to convince the City Council to move on the bill. When asked about the speaker’s response, one board member scoffed.

“That thing about it not being economically feasible is a facade to cover up the fact that this adminsitration is in bed with the real estate industry,” said Jean Rice, the aforementioned board member.

Picture the Homeless has done its own study on the cost of the bill, which they put at under $50,000 per year.

By on September 29, 2010, 3:16 pm
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