Myung Lee Speaks at Press Conference Announcing Recommendations for Improved Nonprofit Contracting

At a press conference jointly organized by New York City Comptroller Brad Lander and the Mayor's Office on February 14, 2021, VOA-Greater New York President & CEO, Myung Lee, spoke about the overwhelming challenges the city's nonprofits currently face due to the existing government contracting and procurement process.

"Nonprofit organizations like ours are always asked to address many of the city's intractable challenges, and in times of crisis like the COVID pandemic we're asked to do even more, work even faster and be flexible within a very inflexible system—and we always, always come through," Myung shared in her remarks at the event.

"For far too long though, the city has not held up its end of the bargain," she continues. "They've subjected the nonprofit community to unnecessary red tape [and] overwhelming administrative burdens, all the while shifting tens of millions of dollars...of financial risk to our sector every year."

VOA-Greater New York is one of several nonprofit organizations asked to participate in the joint Mayoral and Comptroller task force that is evaluating this issue. The group recently released the findings of their work in a report which included "actionable steps to better manage and streamline the nonprofit contracting and procurement process."

For many years, VOA-Greater New York has been a vocal advocate on procurement reform. The organization has had to take out millions of dollars worth of commercial loans—at great and non-recoupable costs—just to fill gaps that are created because the government does not register contracts and pay nonprofits on time.

"For VOA-Greater New York, fixing all the issues that were recommended today in this report, will give us the financial relief to do more for our neighbors in need," explains Myung. "[And it will] free up our staff to really focus on our mission to end homelessness."

"We are thrilled to have partners at City Hall...Mayor Adams and the deputy mayors, the Comptroller's office and also in City Council, that will turn all of this talk today into action," says Myung. "We really are looking forward to implementing these recommendations together."

Read more, including the full report, here.