Further Python analysis reveals NYCHA's mold- and mildew-related service requests by housing development, borough

By LOUIS FLORES

Brooklyn was site of the most mold- and mildew-related service requests made by tenants of the New York City Housing Authority, according to a review of a CSV file of maintenance records produced by NYCHA to Progress Queens in response to a request filed under the State's Freedom of Information Law.

The review of the CSV file for this report was largely performed using a module written by the publisher of Progress Queens using the Python programming language.

Ascribing the mold- and mildew-related service requests by public housing complex and by borough was made possible by using a lookup table created by Progress Queens using information made publicly available by NYCHA in its Development Directory.

Brooklyn was over-represented in mold- and mildew-related service requests

Brooklyn led all other boroughs for the nominal count of mold- and mildew-related service requests, with 2,599 maintenance records for mold and 49,645 maintenance records for mildew. As noted from the Python analysis, NYCHA has reported more mildew-related service requests than mold.

Brooklyn was marginally over-represented as the site with most mold- and mildew-related service requests in relation to its share of the over-all number of total service requests. In respect of mold-related service requests, Brooklyn was site for 41 per cent. of service requests. In respect of mildew-related service requests, Brooklyn was site for 36 per cent. of service requests. These statistics compare with Brooklyn having been site of just 34 per cent. of all service requests for the corresponding period of time for the records contained in the CSV file.

The review of the CSV file also revealed the public housing developments with most mold- and mildew-related maintenance requests in each borough.

The Jefferson Houses had the most mold-related service requests for any public housing development in Manhattan, with 158 records of requests in the CSV file. The Stapleton Houses had the most mold-related service requests for any public housing development on Staten Island, with 64 requests.

In respect of mildew-related service requests, the Castle Hill Houses had the most reports of mildew-related service requests, at 2,568, of any public housing development in the Bronx, according to information in the CSV file. Comparatively, the Stapleton Houses had the most reports of mildew-related service requests for any public housing development on Staten Island, with 1,170 requests.

For the time period of service requests covered in the CSV file, Manhattan and Brooklyn were tied, which each having two public housing developments in the top 5 for nominal total mold-related maintenance requests.

For the time period of service requests covered in the CSV file, the Bronx and Brooklyn were tied, which each having two public housing developments in the top 5 for nominal total mildew-related maintenance requests.

The information about the reporting of mold- and mildew-related service requests may be pertinent to the class action mold litigation case filed by NYCHA tenants. A Federal judge has appointed Francis McGovern, a Duke University School of Law professor, who has extensive experience in mass tort litigation, to serve as the special master over the litigation. A request made by Progress Queens on 30 June to interview Professor McGovern was never answered.

For this report, the media office for NYCHA did not answer a request made by Progress Queens to interview NYCHA CEO Shola Olatoye.

Progress Queens has obtained information about efforts possibly being made by NYCHA to counteract the Federal investigation into the physical condition standards at its public housing developments. A question submitted in advance to press officials of the U.S. Attorney's Office for New York's southern district, which is reportedly leading an investigation of NYCHA, was never answered. Generally, the U.S. Attorney's Office does not comment on active investigations, much less to acknowledge any in existence. In the past, the U.S. Attorney's Office has refused a request made by Progress Queens to interview any of the Assistant U.S. Attorneys in charge of the reported NYCHA investigation.

A note on the counts of mold- and mildew-related service requests

As previously reported by Progress Queens, Python analysis of the CSV file identified 6,326 records of mold-related service requests and 139,281 records of mildew-related service requests.

However, after tracing the mold- and mildew-related service requests by public housing development and by borough, 33 fewer mold-related records and 745 fewer mildew-related records were observed, because NYCHA used codes for public housing developments for those corresponding fewer apartment units which no longer appear on NYCHA's Development Directory. Using an interactive shell for Python, supplementary commands were used to identify the unidentifiable codes corresponding to the under-reported records observed for this report.  Commands used to identify the 745 fewer mildew-related records were posted on Scribd, and a similar process was used by Progress Queens to identify the 33 fewer mold-related records.

In an effort to obtain correct information about those unidentifiable codes, Progress Queens submitted a request to NYCHA, asking for the location corresponding to each of those unidentifiable codes, but NYCHA never responded to Progress Queens' request.

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