For years, we have been struggling with a housing affordability crisis in New York. Countless tenants have been forced from their homes due to skyrocketing rents, harassment, and retaliatory eviction. Loopholes added to the rent regulation laws since 1994 led to deregulation of approximately 300,000 apartments, contributed to tenant harassment, and drove massive speculation in the
The Senate and the Assembly has reached agreement on landmark legislation overhauling our state’s housing and tenant protection laws. This legislation will finally deliver long-awaited protections for tenants, and close the major loopholes that drove the loss of affordable rent-regulated housing. The final agreement is not perfect —I wish it eliminated MCIs and IAIs altogether and included “good cause eviction” protections for tenants in unregulated apartments. Nonetheless, it establishes the strongest new protections for tenants in at least a generation, and lays a solid foundation on which to build in future years.
This historic legislation would never have been possible without the tireless advocacy of the members of the Upstate Downstate Housing Coalition and other grassroots advocates who spent the last year educating legislators about the magnitude of the crisis facing residents in all corners of New York. I am also extraordinarily grateful for the leadership of Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins and Senate Housing Committee Chair Brian Kavanagh throughout this process.