Grammy nominated rapper and Queens Native Ja Rule, spoke publicly about the issue of outdated water heaters in New York City that has continued to plague local residents during the winter months.
Amid a series of snow storms, and temperatures that can reach as low as the single digits, the “Clap Back” rapper is making his voice heard along with residents of the community and City Council members as they seek to speed up the reported $82 million dollar plan to renovate NYC’s public housing boilers. The $82 million plan is supposed to be completed by 2022 –a time frame that Ja Rule and many residents are not happy with.
“City Hall, New York City, the mayor, the governor, they should all be ashamed of themselves,” the Murder Inc. Rapper exclaimed at a community gathering. “New York is living in third world conditions and it should not be this way.”
Following Rule’s address, a Wall Street Journal reported asked the rapper if he had a message for another New York City native, President Trump, in regard to the matter.
“I’m sure we can all sit up here and throw a lot of nasty words and nasty barbs at President Trump but the truth is he is at the top of this problem,” Ja responded. “The President doesn’t care about Black and Brown people so why should anybody else – guys under his tutelage?”
Ja also added that he believes the fix for this problem should start from the local level with the mayor, governor, and senators of New York.
Earlier this month, the New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) was grilled by City Council members after reports that more than 80 percent of public housing residents in the city were without functioning heating systems. These homes reportedly have out of date boilers that have been in use for at least 70 years dating back to the 1940’s.
In the brutal New York winter season, residents have been forced to wear jackets and blankets in their homes, or even use potentially dangerous tactics to warm up their homes like using the heat from their oven which can cause carbon monoxide poisoning with gas ovens.
The NYCHA says the cause of slow moving repairs to public housing buildings comes from a 30 percent decrease in repairmen and women in the city since 2013.
Just last week, The New York Post reported that four City Council members are asking Governor Andrew Cuomo to declare a state of emergency on boiler repairs in an attempt to access more funds to help speed up the process of repairing the out of date boilers. As of now, there are no immediate plans for NYCHA and Governor Cuomo to declare a state of emergency to advance boiler repairs.