2010-11-12 / Top Stories

Flake Gets Millions For Senior Housing Plan

By Howard Schwach

The Reverend Floyd Flake and his Allen AME Development Corporation will build the senior citizen affordable housing project in Far Rockaway. The Reverend Floyd Flake and his Allen AME Development Corporation will build the senior citizen affordable housing project in Far Rockaway. Controversial developer and political powerhouse Floyd Flake has been awarded nearly $12 million to build affordable senior citizen housing in Far Rockaway.

The Allen AME Neighborhood Preservation and Development Corporation, a wing of Flake’s massive Jamaica church, expects to break ground on the 66-unit Allen By The Bay project in the near future.

The five-story project is slated to be completed within 12 to 16 months, officials say.

“There’s just not enough affordable housing for senior citizens,” Flake, the CEO of the corporation, told Daily News reporter Clair Trapasso. “What we provide is the ability to live with dignity in the later years of their lives.”

The new facility will be built on Loretta Road near Beach 22 Street. It will include an arts and crafts room and a library, an official said.

The project is being funded, sources say, through a New York State Homes and Community Renewal loan, which will be paid back through a $10 million federal grant and various tax credits.

Singles earning less than $28,000 a year and couples earning less than $31,700 a year will be eligible for an apartment.

Community Board 14 approved the project last September.

Flake and his development corporation have been under investigation of late.

In February, the Reverend Floyd Flake took to his Queens pulpit to defend the state’s controversial pick of the Aqueduct Entertainment Group (AEG) to run the Aqueduct Racino video lottery terminals – a company in which Flake had a stake.

“I know you must have read a lot about this in the tabloids,” Flake told the congregation, worshipers said. Flake, an influential former congressman and present political behind-thescenes powerhouse, owned a .06 percent stake in AEG, the company that was given the multi-million dollar deal by Governor David Paterson and other Democratic leaders, including Flake’s old employees, state Senator Malcolm Smith and Congressman Gregory Meeks.

The Aqueduct slots could bring in as much as $6 billion a year, experts predict, with AEG taking home about $180 million annually.

Flake insisted the company beat out other bidders to win the Racino deal fair and square – and he touted the project as a godsend that will bring much-needed jobs to the community.

AEG was eventually removed from the bidding process by the state lottery commission for being “unlicensible.”

Late last month, the State Investigator General issued a scathing 308-page report that focused on the AEG debacle, recommending criminal charges for several local politicians, including Smith.

Flake was also noted in the report for visiting Paterson days before the decision to give the Racino to AEG to discuss whom Flake would endorse in the upcoming November election.

The implication on the part of the report was that Flake would trade his endorsement for Paterson’s endorsement of AEG to run the Racino.

Flake was cleared of any criminal misdeeds, for the most part, in the IG’s report, although he was cited for playing politics in what should have been a straight-forward business deal.

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