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NYC Agrees To Remove Mold, Fix Leaks In Public Housing More Quickly

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) -- New York City has agreed to deal more thoroughly with the removal of mold in public housing.

The New York Times reports that it's part of an agreement by the Bloomberg administration to settle a federal lawsuit by tenants.

The city was accused of allowing mold to persist, aggravating tenants' respiratory ailments.

NYC Agrees To Remove Mold, Fix Leaks In Public Housing More Quickly

"They would come and scrape the mold off the wall and then they would just paint over it, but the problem would come back again in three or four months because they never addressed the issue of moisture," the Reverend Getulio Cruz told 1010 WINS. "Now they're committed to not just dealing with the mold, but also addressing the issue of moisture."

The settlement requires the city Housing Authority to remove the mold and fix leaks, insulate pipes and deal with other moisture issues. It covers all of the authority's 400,000 tenants.

In most cases, the authority will have to fix the problem within seven to 15 days of a work order.

The settlement requires the authority to recognize asthma as a disability and make accommodations for tenants with the condition.

"When you have a moldy wet apartment, if you have asthma it can be much more difficult to breath. And in some cases it might actually trigger asthma attacks," Al Huang of the Natural Resources Defense Council told WCBS 880's Peter Haskell.

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