Mayor Adams’ senior housing adviser, who has been present since the de Blasio administration stepped down to take over the reins of a nonprofit advocacy organization – the latest in a recent series of high-profile departures from city councils, the Daily News reads.
Annemarie Gray, who is the City Hall’s Senior Land Use Advisor, will have her final day this Wednesday, she said in an interview. Next month, Gray said she would take on the role of executive director of Open New York, a well-known advocacy group.
Working in various sectors of the public sector focused on housing for nearly a decade, Gray said that entering the advocacy sphere is “the best use of my energy”. She also didn’t hesitate to acknowledge that one aspect of her new job would be keeping the old boss’s feet on fire.
“[Adams] he has placed many intentions that are completely in the right direction. It’s early and I’m really excited to insist that all elected officials across the board are accountable, ”said Gray, who in his final year in office held the same senior land-use position under former mayor Bill de Blasio.
Deputy Mayor of Economic Development and Labor, Maria Torres-Springer, who oversaw Gray since Adams’s inauguration, commended her “for helping to get started in the first nine months of our administration.”
“Annemarie is as passionate about housing policy as she is an expert,” said Torres-Springer. “He understands that the New York housing crisis is very real and that we need to align the kind of civic advocacy and action to match the urgency of the moment.”
One of the few town hall officials detained since de Blasio’s time, Gray’s exit follows on the heels of two other city government veterans who call him resignation.
Roberto Perez, director of Adams’ intergovernmental affairs office, heads to the door this month to join the tech company after holding various high roles under de Blasio as first reported by Politico.
Greg Russ, meanwhile, announced last week that he was resigning as CEO of the New York City Housing Authority over the ramifications of the agency dealing with the recent arsenic threat in the East Village project. Russ, who will remain chairman of the NYCH board, was appointed CEO by de Blasio in 2019.
Gray, who played an important role in the zoning changes of Manhattan’s SoHo neighborhoods and Brooklyn’s Gowanus neighborhoods during the de Blasio era, is leaving public services as the city’s housing crisis continues to worsen.
According to a report by Douglas Ellman and Miller Samuel Real Estate Appraiser and Consultants, the median monthly rent in Manhattan was $ 4,150 in July – 29% more than in the same period in 2021. The homelessness crisis is also worsening, in part due to the recent influx of Latin American immigrants, where more than 55,000 people sleep in shelters during a typical night in Latin America.
Gray said the source of the housing crisis lay in the slow period of building new affordable housing in New York City. According to the first Adams board report published last week, only 16,042 inexpensive housing units were in preparation for construction or maintenance in fiscal 2022, almost a 50% decrease compared to fiscal 2021.
Nevertheless, Gray said he was cautiously optimistic about the future of housing in the city.
“The coalition is starting to grow that the construction of more flats should not be controversial,” she said.
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