SUCCESS, FOR NOW

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FYI: A court-ordered progress report shows the HIV/AIDS Services Administration has demonstrated a dramatic turnaround in how quickly it provides emergency assistance, and, according to Housing Works, has done so thanks to Local Law 49. In deciding a lawsuit that charged HASA with failing to comply with Local law 49, a federal magistrate judge ruled in 2001 that HASA must provide monthly performance reports. Housing Works says the latest report shows that the agency has processed 99 percent of its emergency benefit cases on time, up from 67 percent in 2001. In March, the agency deployed 45 new case managers in order to comply with caseload requirements for the first time since the 1997 law’s passage. Despite this good news, Housing Works charges that problems remain–delays in issuing food stamps, hasty case closings–and warns the mayor’s suggestion that Local Law 49 is “outdated” threatens clients’ recourse. [4/9/03]