New Homeless Comish

New York City is about to get a new “homeless czar.”

The Bloomberg administration has just announced that it has tapped Robert Hess, Deputy Managing director of Philly’s Department of Adult Services, to replace Linda Gibbs as commissioner of New York City’s Department of Homeless Services. Ms. Gibbs was recently promoted to the post of Deputy Mayor for Health and Human Services.

Mr. Hess will inherit some hefty challenges when he arrives at his new Beaver Street office. New York’s shelter population is a solid ten times larger than Philadelphia’s 3000 shelter residents, as is its street population.

At the same time, cutbacks in federal housing subsidies will make it that much harder for him to reach the mayor’s goal of reducing homelessness by two-thirds over five years.

Good luck, Mr. Hess!

- Lizzy Ratner