Governor Patrick has been a friend to public housing. His new proposal is aimed at all the right issues: eliminating corruption, improving the management of scarce resources, and balancing local and regional responsibility and decision-making (“Patrick targets public housing boards,” Page A1, Jan. 10). As with most proposals, the devil is in the details, and there are many details to work out in this one.
As the work continues, I would propose several criteria: Does the final outcome include clearly articulated standards by which the state and the regional boards would hold themselves and each other accountable? Will the expertise and good management practices that currently exist within our more successful housing authorities be recognized and used to strengthen the new regional system? Will the end product of the new system translate into better-maintained properties and services for our residents?
This conversation is just beginning, and the governor has done us a great service by once again shining a light on some of the critical issues that affect more than 300,000 of our friends and neighbors across the state. The current system is in need of change. Let’s keep our eyes on the prize and move forward.
The writer is chairman of the Brookline Housing Authority. His views here are his own.