Mayor Eric Adams has found his next Building Department Commissioner.

Former City & State Borough President Jimmy Oddow to fill position Report. Oddo will transition from his chief of staff position to Deputy Mayor for Operations Meera Joshi, a position Oddo described as his “dream job.”

No one describes the construction commissioner position like this. For years, mayors have struggled to fill the thankless position, even after a 2008 change requiring applicants to be licensed architects or engineers.

Permanent jobs have been vacant since Eric Ulrich resigned in November, just six months into his tenure, he was reportedly being questioned by investigators from the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office investigating illegal gambling. Ulrich has not been charged with a crime.

First Deputy Commissioner Kazimir Vilenchik has been acting as the department’s acting commissioner. Vilenchik has been front and center since the collapse of a lower Manhattan garage that killed its manager on April 17.

Odo, a former city council minority leader, is experienced in politics but not in construction. But the challenge of running a building is more about management and ethics. Poorly paid inspectors can shut down projects costing millions (or hundreds of millions) of dollars, a power that has led to bribery scandals over the years.

Additionally, the onerous process for delicensing has spawned a thriving expedited industry that persists despite the agency’s improvements.

Oddo has found himself at odds with the development industry in the past, notably during his time in charge of Staten Island, where he opposed multiple major projects — often over traffic concerns.but he is considered a pro-business republican impatient with stupidity.

One of the biggest issues Otto will face in the department is the implementation of Local Law 97, which caps carbon emissions from large buildings. fine The real estate industry has been pushing for reforms until next year for offenders.

Adams is also keen on having the department take over fire safety inspections from the FDNY, where bottlenecks have slowed development and driven up their costs. But the construction department is also not known for its speed, with 18% of its workforce reported to be vacant.

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