It's been three months since Mayor Bill de Blasio and Federal Housing Secretary Ben Carson signed a landmark agreement to install a federal monitor at the New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA).

Shortly thereafter, Bart Schwartz, a longtime consultant and former prosecutor, was selected as that monitor.

But since then, we've learned very little about what he is doing and how much he will be paid.

Appearing before the City Council on Tuesday, the interim chair of the housing authority, Kathryn Garcia, revealed the city is still not sure how much the entire agreement will cost.

"We don't know where all the lead is," Garcia said about a requirement in the agreement that the city remove lead paint from apartments. "We can't project exactly how much it will cost, because it really is going to depend on the scope."

City officials told NY1 that Schwartz has brought on about two dozen employees. But he is still operating without a contract.

Garcia said that's one area of the agreement NYCHA isn't directly responsible for, saying the law department has been tasked with contracting with the monitor and paying the bills for his team.

Schwartz's office has repeatedly rejected interview requests from NY1. A spokesperson for Schwartz told us he could not provide us with any information.

On top of that, the city blew a second deadline last week to select a consultant to review the authority's management structure. That consultant was supposed to be selected no later than 60 days after the monitor was appointed. Garcia only said Wednesday that it would happen soon.

Soon, the city will face another deadline: After extending the initial date, the city will have to select a permanent leader for NYCHA next week.

Of course, we asked City Hall whether they would meet that deadline to select a new chairperson. A spokesperson said that process is ongoing.


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