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Ben Carson Asserts New Control Over New York’s Housing Plans

In a blow to Bill de Blasio, HUD has appointed a federal monitor to oversee New York City’s housing authority. But the city avoided its worst-case scenario.
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio leaves a meeting with HUD Secretary Ben Carson in December. The federal housing authority has threatened a takeover of the troubled New York City Housing Authority.
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio leaves a meeting with HUD Secretary Ben Carson in December. The federal housing authority has threatened a takeover of the troubled New York City Housing Authority.Mark Lennihan/AP

Ben Carson, the nation’s housing secretary, announced a sweeping plan to appoint a federal monitor to oversee the New York City Housing Authority, the nation’s largest public housing agency. While the deal places the organization under the direct supervision of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, it falls short of a full federal seizure—a last resort dreaded by the city.

The decision came as a blow to New York Mayor Bill de Blasio’s efforts to lead on the issue of affordable housing. But the city’s worst fears—that the public housing authority responsible for some 400,000 vulnerable New Yorkers would fall under the direct control of HUD—were averted.