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Garrity, Paul G. : Papers on BHA receivership, 1976-1985


2 cartons, 10 file boxes


These papers were given to the University of Massachusetts/ Boston Archives by Judge Paul G. Garrity in January 1987.


In February 1975, Paul G. Garrity, Chief Judge of the Housing Court of the City of Boston, heard Amando Perez, et als., vs. Boston Housing Authority, a class action suit brought by tenants living in apartments owned and operated by the BHA. PGG ordered the BHA to present a plan of remedies, which he then found inadequate. PGG judged that the BHA had, in essence, abandoned its low-income tenants. After several efforts failed, the court decided that the BHA was unable to carry-out the basic functions of a public housing authority, including financial planning, housing maintainence, and systematically filling vacancies. Therefore, PGG ordered the receivership in February 1980.

The receiver, Lewis Spence, was to reorganize and administer the BHA in order to protect the BHA from city political leaders, improve living conditions by bringing housing up to sanitation and other codes, promote fair and integrated housing, and provide a stable foundation to maintain improved performance after the receivership was no longer in effect. The City of Boston resumed responsibility for the BHA in October 1984 when PGG found the receivership successful enough to end it.

Scope and Content

These papers include minutes, reports, memoranda, correspondence created by Judge Garrity and officials involved in the early efforts to reform the BHA and in the receivership. Many are copies of documents in the official court record.