Issues: Housing

Community Leaders Gather to Celebrate Lackawanna Homes Project

LACKAWANNA – On Saturday, September 28, 2013, New York State Senator Tim Kennedy and Assemblyman Sean Ryan hosted a community event celebrating the upcoming Lackawanna Homes project. The project, locally sponsored by Lackawanna Housing Development Corporation, will construct 48 single-family homes in Lackawanna’s First Ward. The project will be constructed by The NRP Group LLC, and the $12 million cost is funded by New York State Office of Homes and Community Renewal, the City of Lackawanna, and Erie County. The Lackawanna Homes project is set to start construction in April 2014.

October 7, 2013
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Senator Hoylman Demands Hotel Owners Respect Sandy Evacuees’ Rights as Tenants

New York, NY (October 4, 2013) – New York State Senator Brad Hoylman issued the following statement today in response to reports that local hotel operators were seeking to illegally evict evacuees of Superstorm Sandy despite being offering payments by New York Disaster Interfaith Services for their continued stay.  “I am deeply disturbed that 30 Superstorm Sandy evacuees living in hotel rooms in my district and hundreds in hotels elsewhere in the city are potentially facing imminent illegal eviction after the City terminated its hotel reimbursement program.

October 4, 2013
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On Behalf of Regular New Yorkers, Sen. Krueger Responds to Airbnb's "Three Principles"

Sen. Krueger issued the following statement in response to Airbnb's recent blog post, which was circulated to media as part of an ongoing public relations and lobbying effort against New York's laws on short-term rentals.

October 3, 2013
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Senator Kennedy, Preservation Buffalo Niagara Announce Preserve New York Grant Secured for Historic Preservation of Buffalo’s Old First Ward

In March, Senator Kennedy announced the launch of efforts to secure Historic District designation for Buffalo’s Old First Ward.

Preserve NY grant is major step forward that will allow Old First Ward to conduct full study into neighborhood’s past – which will be used to secure Historic District designation and historic rehab tax credits.

Kennedy: Our ongoing pursuit of Historic District designation for the Old First Ward intertwines with progress at the city’s waterfront and new efforts to make the grain elevators a destination.

October 3, 2013
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Statement on Appeals Board Decision in the Nigel Warren Short-Term Rental Case

The following statement is attributable to State Senator Liz Krueger (D-Manhattan):

"The New York City ECB Appeals Board decision overturning fines levied against Airbnb host Nigel Warren's landlord is little more than the exception that proves the rule. The Appeals Board dismissed the fines because Mr. Warren's roommate, who was a permanent resident of the apartment, was present in the apartment during an Airbnb customer's stay. Situations like this one, where a permanent tenant remains living in a part of the home, were never the focus of the New York law against illegal hotels.

October 1, 2013
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The Verge: One Ruling Doesn't Make Airbnb Sublets Legal

Tech news site The Verge reported on the Airbnb-backed appeal that overturned fines in one illegal short-term rental case, and quoted Liz, putting the decision into perspective.

October 1, 2013
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The New York Times: Tenant's Fine for Renting to Tourist Overturned

Sen. Krueger was quoted in this New York Times piece, explaining that short-term rentals in multi-family residential buildings remain illegal, despite a small legal victory for Airbnb in an isolated, cherry-picked case.

October 1, 2013
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Media Advisory: Financial Fitness Workshop Will Help Homeowners and Families Take Control of their Finances

Yonkers, NY - Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins (D/I/WF - 35th District) will co-host a "Financial Fitness Workshop" with the Housing Action Council, Community Housing Innovations and Attorney General Eric Schneiderman's Office this evening at the Yonkers Riverfront Library. The event will offer information about personal budgeting, credit issues, mortgage modification and refinancing options. All presentations and materials will be available in Spanish.

Who: Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins, Housing Action Council, Community Housing Innovations, Attorney General Eric Schneiderman's Office

September 17, 2013
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Senator O'Brien reminds homeowners to reapply for STAR property tax exemption

ROCHESTER, N.Y. --  Senator Ted O’Brien today reminded New Yorkers who currently receive the basic STAR exemption they must reapply before December 31 to continue receiving the exemption in 2014 and future years.

“The STAR exemption is one of the best tools we currently have to help protect New Yorkers from the crushing burden of property taxes,” Senator O’Brien said.  “The program was being strained by inappropriate and fraudulent uses, and this reapplication process will help ensure that this program is preserved for the hundreds of thousands who rely on it for tax relief.”

The exemption is for owner-occupied primary residences with a family income less than $500,000, and exempts the first $30,000 of the home’s value from school taxes.

August 30, 2013
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NY Presbyterian hiking rents on blue-collar workers.

By Simone Weichselbaum/NY DAILY NEWS

New York-Presbyterian/Columbia University Medical Center is hiking rents in subsidized housing it provides to blue collar workers in an effort to squeeze them out, residents say.

Scores of maintenance men, security guards and other lower-wage employees pay under $1,000 a month to live in apartments on tree-lined streets near the Broadway facility while rent for new residents is at market rates nearly twice as high.

August 27, 2013
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Governor Cuomo Announces $71 Million to Build Affordable Housing Statewide

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced that $71 million is now available through New York State Homes & Community Renewal (HCR) for shovel-ready projects to build affordable housing units across the state. 

August 23, 2013
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Senator Serrano Stands With Tenants of 888 Grand Concourse to Demand Landlord Accountability

(Bronx, NY) - Senator José M. Serrano joined Community Action for Safe Apartments (CASA), other elected officials and tenants of 888 Grand Concourse to call for repairs on the building's premises. Frustration among tenants has intensified after months of being in court and failure of the landlord to adhere to a judge’s order to correct more than 340 violations to the residential building. Senator Serrano maintained that it is time to hold landlords accountable.

August 21, 2013
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Senator Kennedy, Assemblywoman Peoples-Stokes Announce Much-Needed Housing Grant for Broadway-Fillmore Neighborhood

This $200,000 grant from New York State Affordable Housing Corporation will be disbursed to homeowners within a targeted revitalization area to help support necessary home repairs.

Broadway-Fillmore NHS and HomeFront highlight neighborhood progress, announce new staffing and program changes. 

M&T Foundation awards $20,000 grant to streamline delivery of Broadway-Fillmore NHS and HomeFront housing grant programs.

August 16, 2013
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City, State Leaders Outline Initiatives to Eliminate ‘Zombie Houses’, Hold Banks Accountable for Foreclosure Delay

Kennedy, Brown, Kearns, Scanlon gather at 124 McKinley Parkway to bring attention to impact of ‘zombie houses’ on city neighborhoods. 

Coordinated efforts from city and state lawmakers aim to combat the growing problem of blighted, vacant homes stuck in foreclosure limbo. 

Kennedy: ‘Zombie houses’ are eating up our neighborhoods and leaving eyesores and diminished property values in their wake. These out-of-town banks must be held accountable for the harm they’ve caused.

August 9, 2013
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Be Our Guest: Affordable housing plan for Willets Point is reduced and could be doomed

As reported by the Daily News:

By State Senator Jose Pealta:

If City Hall put a wrecking ball to 2,000 units of affordable housing to make room for a shopping mall, it would be front-page news and there would be no end to the outrage.

That’s essentially what’s happening at Willets Point. Unfortunately, it’s hardly causing a stir with anyone other than local affordable housing advocates.

The Willets Point development plan agreed to by the City Council in 2008 called for a a mix of retail space and housing, including the construction of 820 homes for families making $38,400 a year or less; 330 homes for families earning between $38,400 and $46,080; and 770 units for families earning from $46,080 to $99,840.

For full article, click here. 

July 1, 2013
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New York Times: Luxe Builders Chase Dreams of Property Tax Exemptions

Sen. Krueger spoke with New York Times columnist Michael Powell for this piece on abuses in the 421-a tax credit program:

State Senator Liz Krueger watches such unneeded tax subsidies — for energy, insurance, tobacco and luxury development — slip like barges down a darkened canal. She notes that the housing bill “was held hostage so a few well-connected developers could rob taxpayers to the tune of millions.”

June 27, 2013
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Summary of 2013 Senate Legislative Action

 

2013-2014 NEW YORK STATE BUDGET

 

The New York State Senate approved the 2013-14 state budget that delivers on priorities outlined by the Senate Republican Conference to provide much-needed tax relief for middle-class families, help businesses create jobs, and, for the third consecutive year, the budget keeps spending growth below two percent, which is consistent with the local spending cap that applies to school districts and local governments.  It was also the third consecutive budget approved prior to the April 1 deadline.

 

June 24, 2013
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Senate Approves Women Equality Agenda

The New York State Senate passed an historic package of bills today that would ensure equal pay for women, strengthen laws against human trafficking, provide greater support and protection for victims of domestic violence, stop sexual harassment, and end discrimination of women in the workplace related to gender, pregnancy, and family status. 

June 21, 2013
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SQUADRON ANNOUNCES SENATE PASSAGE OF BILL TO MAKE MITCHELL-LAMA HOUSING MORE ACCESSIBLE

Squadron-Silver Legislation Would Give More Middle Income Families Access to Affordable Housing

ALBANY -- Senator Daniel Squadron announced that, today, the State Senate passed his legislation to make the Mitchell-Lama Housing Program more accessible to middle class families. The Assembly passed the legislation earlier this month; it will now be sent to the Governor.

Current law stipulates that families with two or more dependents -- whose joint annual net income exceeds 100% but is below 125% of average median income (AMI) -- are eligible for Mitchell-Lama housing if they pay a rental surcharge. But by making this allowance available only to families with dependents, many families are excluded simply because they don’t have children. 

June 18, 2013
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