Speak out for Affordable Housing

Starting June 7, city residents can speak out about affordable housing.

There are some 900,000 rent stabilized apartments in New York City housing an estimated two million New Yorkers; rent increases in these apartments are governed by the NYC Rent Guidelines Board (RGB)  which establishes the lease guidelines for rent stabilized apartments, lofts and hotels.

The RGB usually votes on the guidelines each June (Visit Meetings page for exact dates) with the final vote this year at 7 pm on June 26 at Cooper Union.  The guidelines then apply to leases with effective dates between October 1 of the current year and  and September 30 of the following year. The Rent Stabilization Association, a landlord group, proposed hikes of 4 percent on one-year lease renewals and 7 percent on two-year lease renewals.

For many New Yorkers, especially  seniors, rent stabilization is the only reason they can remain in their apartments. If you want to support tenants rights for yourselves and your neighbors, here’s how you can make your voice heard besides contacting your local elected officials. The deadline to submit comments is June 22, 2018. 

    • Website. You can submit comments to the NYC Rent Guidelines Board through the NYC rules website.
    • Mail.  You can mail comments to NYC Rent Guidelines Board, 1 Centre Street, Suite 2210, New York, NY 10007. You ca address your views to the Chair or any board member.
    • Fax.  You can fax comments to NYC Rent Guidelines Board, 212-669-7488.

You can also speak at the hearings. Pre-registered speakers are given priority in the order of speakers.  You can sign up before the hearing by calling 212-669-7480. You can also sign up at the public hearings from 5:30 pm to 8:30 pm on June 7, from 4:00 pm to 8:00 pm on June 19, and from 5:00 pm to 8:00 pm on June 11, 13 and 21. You can speak for up to two minutes; the rules are that the public cannot address the Board directly at voting meetings: the final vote is June 26 at 7 pm.  There are some tips on how to present testimony here.

The hearings are held throughout June and take place in every borough; the dates/times/locations are here.

The hearings are:  6/7 in Queens; 6/11 in The Bronx; 6/13 in Brooklyn; 6/19 in Lower Manhattan; and 6/21 in Upper Manhattan.  The final vote is 6/26.

BTW, this isn’t just a New York City issue. One study reports that older renters everywhere are feeling the squeeze.  Take a read here.

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