Showing posts from June, 2012

Has your Assembly Member sent a letter like A.M. O'Donnell's to Speaker Silver?


Don't let J-51 be renewed with tenant protections!
Ask your Assembly Member to send a letter like the one by Assembly Member Daniel O'Donnell to Speaker Sheldon Silver.  Read it below.

Tenant Protections Still Pending in Albany


Albany's legislative business is still not completed - and tenant protections hang in the balance.  

Please tip the balance in our favor.  

Find who represents you and 

Tell them that 
J-51 should not be renewed or extended without these tenant protections:
Capping MCIs (Major Capital Improvements):  A2459-A(Cal 445) O’Donnell /S523a Krueger, L.Protecting preferential rent tenants from huge increases:  A1364-A(Cal 442) JeffriesPutting rent controlled tenants under the Rent Guidelines Boar:,  A1892-A(Cal 444) Rosenthal, L./S5699aEspaillatReforming the Rent Guidelines Board:  A7234a (RR 93) Rosenthal / S5603a Espaillat Finally, ask them NOT to approve A10798 (Lopez et al.) about tax breaks for landlords.

Rent Guidelines 2012 Order: Partial Victory for Tenants


Having plied the Rent Guidelines Board with information, chants, signs, and a rally, tenants won a partial victory with the lowest stabilized rent increases in many years. 

If your lease renewal goes into effect any time from October 1, 2012 through September 30, 2013, you must pay an increase based on the June 21, 2012 RGB order.  How much of an increase depends on what the current rent is.

If your current rent is $1000 or more, you will pay 2% increase for a 1-year lease renewal4% increase for a 2-year lease renewal.But if your current rent is less than $1000, you will pay    $20 increase for a 1-year lease renewal$40 increase for a 2-year lease renewal.The Rent Guidelines Board (RGB) has imposed this "poor tax" so that tenants whose rents are below $1000 - usually older tenants who've been in their homes longer will pay higher increases.  

Income down, rents up: Tell the RGB NO!



Be at the Rent Guidelines Bd. Final Vote - & Tenant Rally - Thurs.,June 21



Tell Sheldon Silver: No J-51 renewal without tenant protection


Call Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver today: 
Don't renew J-51 without tenant protections! 
Tell his aide that you're part of the Real Rent Reform Campaign - or one of its member organizations. 

518-455-3791 or 212-312-1420
Landlords desperately want renewal of J-51, a tax break they get for making major building repairs.  But they want it renewed without tenant protections - and tenants need more protection, not less.

So call!   You can download the "Click and Save" in English or in Spanish.   

Click on "read more" below for the Gotham Gazette excerpt. 

What's up in Albany?


The State Assembly is voting on a package of rent regulation bills that include many of those in R3's legislative proposal.   

2012 Rent Regulation Package
Landlord Hardship Rent Increase
A2881 (RR 78) Kavanagh
Same as S1298 Duane
Extends from 3 to 6 years the time a building must be owned in order to qualify for an alternative hardship exemption from rent regulation

Landlord Use
A3033(RR 44) V Lopez
Same as S81 Squadron Limits a landlord's ability to take possession of units for their own primary residence to cases of immediate and compelling necessity, permit recovery of only one unit, and restrict such ability if the tenant has occupied the apartment for twenty or more years

MCI capped
A2459-A(Cal 445) O’DonnellSame as S523a Krueger, L.
Codifies the MCI (major capital improvement) as a surcharge to the legal regulated rent which is separately designated and billed as such, and mandates that the authorized surcharge for MCI's ceases after the cost of the improvement is recouped


Rent Guidelines Board: Testify!


Rent Guidelines Board hearings  There are 2 hearings left and then the final vote and tenant rally. TESTIFY!* Wed., June 13 at 4 PM  at
Repertory Theatre of Hostos
Community College/CUNY
450 Grand Concourse
Bronx, NY 10451

Monday, June 18, 2012 at 10:00 AM at
The Great Hall at Cooper Union
7 East 7th Street, at corner of 3rd Ave.
New York, NY 10003
FINAL VOTE (no testimony) Thursday, June 21, 2012 at 5:30 PM The Great Hall at Cooper Union 7 East 7th Street at corner of 3rd Ave.  (basement) New York, NY 10003

Click here for a flyer in English.
Click here for a flyer in Spanish.  *(Adapted from Registration of speakers is required. 
Pre-register for the June 13 hearing in the Bronx at (212) 385-2934 until 1:00 P.M. on Tuesday, June 12, 2012.
Pre-register for the June 18 hearing in Manhattan at (212) 385-2934 until 1:00 P.M. on Friday, June 15, 2012.
An exact time for speaking cannot be provided, but those pre-registering will b…

Wed.., June 13 in Chinatown: CAAAV Rally


Stand in Solidarity with 11 Allen Street Residents Fighting For Their Homes!

CAAAV in Chinatown is holding a rally this Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Meet at the CAAAV office at

8:30 AM at 46 Hester St. in Manhattan or 
9:30 AM at the Manhattan Housing Court, 111 Centre St.

To RSVP for the action, please email Esther at with
the subject “RSVP 11 Allen Action.”

For more information, click on "read more" below. 

Brooklyn Tenants: Rally for Stronger Rent Laws


Come to a

Press Conference & Rally 
Calling for Tenant Protections and Housing Justice

Tuesday, June 12th 1:00 PM
266 Washington Ave
between Dekalb St. and Willoughby Streets

Click here for a flyer. 

Last year, our rent laws were renewed and even strengthened, but we are still facing unfair rent increases and displacement pressures. Many landlords are using every loophole available to raise our rents and it’s time to say, “enough!” As a community, as a borough, as a city, and as a state, we are coming together to say we need stronger rent laws NOW!

This press conference is being sponsored by the Pratt Area Community
Council, Make the Road New York, the Association for Neighborhood and
Housing Development, New York Communities for Change and Tenants &

For more information, please contact Jennifer Watkins at PACC:
718-522-2613 ext. 032.

Co-sponsored by
Flatbush Tenant Coalition
Fifth Avenue Committee
Make the Road NY
Neighbors Helping Neighbors
Pratt Area Community Council
Real Ren…

When rent laws are not strong - or not enforced . . .


Tenants suffer when rent regulations are not enforced.  Two hundred tenants at 2400 Webb Avenue  - a rent-regulated building - were forced to relocate when their landlord had the fire escapes removed to repair brickwork. 

Tenant protections must be stronger - both written into the law in Albany and in enforcement by the City's Department of Housing Preservation and Development (one of whose inspectors approved removal of the fire escapes - in the absence of any other fire protection); and the State's Housing Community  Renewal.  One R3 organization, Tenants & Neighbors, is working to get our laws enforced. Print out and sign one of their postcards to Governor Cuomo to beef up the enforcement unit.

Protest Unaffordable Rent Increases


Por el folleto mismo en español, haga clic aquí and make your voice heard at the June 13 and June 18 RGB public hearings. Click here for talking points and here for the flyer with the schedule and location.

J-51 matters.


Tell Sheldon Silver, "Just say NO to J-51 renewal - unless tenant protections are seriously strengthened." 

J-51 is a tax benefit program for owners making major repairs to their buildings.  Owners get these tax breaks for a period of years - during which tenants become rent regulated, and those who are already regulated must remain so.  The J-51 program was intended to help the residents and owners of poorer buildings make these crucial repairs.That's the good news. 

But landlords want the bill renewed without strengthening the rent laws, and with a provision that would let them pay back the tax benefits in exchange for being able to de-regulate apartments (ousting the tenants who happen to live in them).  And the City is losing millions of dollars in tax revenue. 

The Community Service Society has written a clear report, Upgrading Private Property at Public Expense.  The NYS Legislature should take notice: When the "three men in a room" (Assembly Speaker Sheldon…

Overflowing Crowd at the Tenant Town Hall


There was an overflow crowd at the June 7th Tenant Town Hall. Tenants from the Lower East Side, Washington Heights, the Bronx, the West Side, and even the Upper East Side of Manhattan perched on the stairs and in the balcony of the auditorium once the seats filled, and then filled Hartley Hall's backyard, listening from a speaker rigged up as the crowd grew.  

Tenants spoke movingly of their experiences - and the need for this legislative session to pass bills that will 
cap Major Capital Improvement (MCI) increases (A2459/S523)reform the Rent Guidelines Board (RGB) (A6394B/S741-B)protect preferential rent tenants from huge increases,(A1364A/S448)
 andprotect rent controlled tenants.(A1892B/S5699-A)With several elected officials there, including Assembly Members Dick Gottfried and Linda Rosenthal, and State Senator Tom Duane, tenants made clear that we need these reforms now - and what we don't need is J-51 renewal as is.  (See the excellent Community Service Society report on J-…

Tenant Town Hall - TONIGHT! Thurs., June 7, 2012


Tired of soaring rents? Need stronger tenant protections NOW?

Come to a
Town Hall Meeting on Tenants’ Rights and Housing Affordability!
Thursday June 7th @ 6:30pm Hartley House in Manhattan 413 West 46th Street, between 9th and 10th Avenue

Click here for a flyer in English
Click here for a flyer in Spanish . Spanish translation will be provided at the Town Hall. 

For more info and RSVP contact Bennett Baumer, HCC Organizer; 212-716-1659 |