Unpaid Non-Profits; NYC’s Version of Unpaid Government Contracts

Posted on February 6, 2019 by Alice Kenny  |  Share

“NYC: Tough Place to Do Business When You’re Doing Business with City Itself”

Comptroller Stringer & Msgr. Kevin Sullivan. Photo courtesy Susan Watts/Office of New York City Comptroller

As cameras turn, at least for now, away from the plight of unpaid federal workers, the local hardship of unpaid non-profit organizations that help keep New York City running, like Catholic Charities, pulls into sharp focus.

 “A concerted effort in streamlining and improving transparency in this process is necessary,” said Catholic Charities NY Executive Director Msgr. Kevin Sullivan as he joined a coalition of advocates and non-profit organizations at a frigid Stand Up for Non-profits outdoor rally on January 31st calling for reform. “These delays are only one part of the problem. Adequately funding of contracts is key to ensuring that the types of services our sector is proud to offer New Yorkers in need continues.”

New York City relies heavily on non-profit human services organizations to meet the needs of children, families and communities, says the Still Running Late report released by New York City Comptroller Scott M. Stinger’s office.  In many ways, they form the foundation of our City’s social safety net, providing front-line services to thousands of New Yorkers in need. 

 Photo courtesy of Susan Watts/Office of New York City Comptroller

Yet the report documented pervasive delays; New York City paid nearly two thousand non-profit agency contracts between half a year to nearly two years late. 

“New York City can be a tough place to do business, and when you are doing business with the City itself, it can be even tougher,” the report summarized.  “Too often the City’s procurement process gets mired in needless bureaucracy, causing hardship to vendors doing business with the City.  It can delay the start of important projects, driving up costs or stop projects in midstream.  And it can drive non-profit organizations to the brink of financial collapse because these mission-driven organizations will continue to provide critical services to New Yorkers in need, whether or not their contracts have been registered.”

“We were proud to stand with such a powerful group of non-profits to advocate for the sector and the communities you all serve,” said Jessica Silver, NYC Chief of Strategic Operations for the First Deputy Comptroller.  “And special thanks to Maria Lizardo, Chris Hanway, Iesha Sekou and Monsignor Sullivan for speaking up about how late contracts have hurt their organizations and communities.

Read NYC Comptroller Scott Stringer’s  Still Running Late  report

Watch “Stand Up for Non-profits” on Facebook Live

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