Little if any of the $600 million fund the city of New York and the Battery Park City Authority agreed to invest in affordable housing development in 1989 has been spent on housing, according to a report by the New York City Independent Budget Office.Instead, Mayor Mike Bloomberg recently announced plans to divert BPCA revenue to finance the expansion of the Javits Center and the Far West Side redevelopment plan, said Housing First, the New York-based public education alliance of over 260 community, business, civic, labor, and religious groups that requested the report. Housing First director Joe Weisbord expressed concern that city officials are not fulfilling the BPCA agreement, even though its intent "was clearly to create affordable housing." Given what he termed a worsening housing crisis for low- to middle-income New Yorkers, "We must seize that opportunity," Mr. Weisbord said. Concerns are fueled by city estimates that about $30 million annually would be needed to secure the city's share of the Javits project, the report said. Overall, the BPCA is expected to generate "at least $75 million each year in excess revenue," funds that could be used for affordable housing, Mr. Weisbord said. Mayor Bloomberg could not be reached for comment.

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