Saturday, April 21, 2012

Great Rally for Rent Controlled Tenants

Photo by Louis Cholden-Brown
On April 20, 2012, rent controlled tenants, their advocates - led by Tenants & Neighbors and the Real Rent Reform Campaign - and neighbors formed a large semi-circle in front of  Goddard-Riverside's senior center to push for passage of A1892-A/S5699.  Tenants spoke, sang,* and applauded the bill, its sponsors, and all those working for it.  Click here for a video of some of the rally. 




WHY THE BILL IS NECESSARY
Rent controlled tenants now get an automatic rent increase of 7.5% - plus fuel cost increases and all those increases of other rent-regulated tenants like permanent Major Capital Improvements (MCIs) and landlord hardship increases (if the owner is making under about 8% profit per year). The original purpose was to raise rent controlled rents to the same level as rent stabilized rents - but now they're rising higher: their rents have gone up almost 6 times in the same period that rent stabilized rents have doubled.  


A1892-A/S5699  would get rid of the automatic increase and put rent controlled rents under the same Rent Guidelines Board that determines increases for rent stabilized tenants.  Thanks to Assembly Member Linda Rosenthal and State Senator Adriano Espaillat for their bill.  It has been passed by the Assembly's Housing Committee. Next: the whole Assembly, and the Senate.  Tell your state elected officials to support it!  And become part of the R3 Campaign!
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*You can sing too.  Click here for the lyrics to "Seven and a half percent" (adapted by Katie Goldstein of Tenants and Neighbors, from the song "Seven and a half cents" from the Pajama Game).  And click here for the video of excerpts of the rally - including the song at the end.