For Immediate Release: June 21, 2016
Contact: Alana Cantillo, 212.482.6673, email@example.com
New York — “Thank you for the opportunity to testify today. The Progressive Caucus represents 18 Council districts in all 5 boroughs representing nearly 3 million City residents. It has been our experience that residents from diverse socioeconomic backgrounds are challenged by exorbitant housing costs worsened by straggling economic growth as indicated by wages and unequal distribution of wealth. The historic growth in homelessness has been another indicator of market pressures which the City is combating with targeted prevention efforts including anti-eviction legal services and the creation of more affordable housing. We respect the duties of this board to evaluate rental adjustments for over one million rent-stabilized housing units that are critical to many working-class New Yorkers. We also acknowledge that tens of thousands of these units have been lost and deregulated due to unscrupulous landlords, illegal transient use and tenant harassment. Similarly, over a quarter of rent-stabilized units are preferential rents which means they can see rental increases in lease renewals way above the percentages regulated by this body. This is why we urge the Board to agree on a rent roll back. These tenants have seen unjustified increases in years past and with the reported energy and operational savings landlords have achieved, a rent-roll back will ensure that low-income New Yorkers can continue to be housed in the few affordable residences still available so native residents are not displaced or worse. It is important that we all work together to protect and preserve this vital City resource. Now is the time for the Board to make a decision that works toward a fairer and more just New York, especially for the most vulnerable.”
Update: The RGB voted on a Rent Freeze for 1 year leases and 2% for two year leases.
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