City to investigate property management firm tied to BMHA

Posted at 2:35 PM, Jan 23, 2018
and last updated 2018-01-23 14:35:44-05

The Buffalo Common Council is launching an investigation into Shinda, the third-party property management company that oversees a Buffalo Municipal Housing Authority property on the city's East Side.

The resolution was introduced by Common Council President Darius Pridgen less than a week after 7 Eyewitness News aired the story of 70 year-old Bobbie Spencer. She had been living without heat or hot water at the Frederick Douglass Townhouses on Jefferson Avenue for two weeks. 

Spencer, who is living with physical disabilities, said she was getting the runaround from Shinda about her broken heating system. She was forced to boil water to bathe and use her oven and small space heaters to keep warm.

Shinda did not respond to 7 Eyewitness News Reporter Justin Moore's requests to speak to management. BMHA owns the property but contracted Shinda to manage the daily operates of the townhomes back in August. 

According to the BMHA, the heating system was old and unrepairable. BMHA said it was the responsibility of Shinda to relocate tenants without heat.  

Our 7 Eyewitness News investigation revealed there was at least one other senior living without heat in these BMHA-owned homes. 

Four days after our original story aired, Spencer's heat and hot water were fixed. However, she fears there are more tenants living without heat and hot water afraid to complain out of fear of retaliation. 

Pridgen says the council will now take a close look at the contract between BMHA and Shinda to see exactly who is responsible.

A representative from Shina has also been asked to appear before the council on February 13th.