Senator Rivera Celebrates the Passage of Historic Measures to Strengthen Rent Laws and Protect New York State Tenants

June 14, 2019

(Albany, NY) - Today, State Senator Gustavo Rivera, along with members of the Senate Majority Conference, proudly voted for bill S.6458. After the historic vote, Senator Rivera released the following statement regarding the landmark piece of legislation that will implement a series of long-awaited reforms to strengthen New York's rent laws and provide adequate protections to tenants across our State. 

"For a long time, tenants in rent-regulated apartments have faced extraordinary challenges due to the greed of unscrupulous landlords who have held an unfair amount of power over them. They have had to fight against poorly maintained and dilapidated units, unfair overcharges, unwarranted eviction notices, and sudden and inexplicable rent hikes. New Yorkers, especially those in working-class neighborhoods such as the ones I represent, have felt the brunt of these injustices. 

My district has the second highest number of rent-regulated units in the state. Unaffordable and perilous housing is, without a doubt, the number one issue affecting my constituents. In fact, since my election in 2010, thousands of them have visited my district office desperate to find solutions to their housing-related problems, only to find that the law was working against them. I am incredibly proud that we have finally passed pro-tenant, affordable housing legislation that truly protects New Yorkers and helps them stay in their homes.

These reforms are the result of the diligence of thousands of brave, unrelenting tenant advocacy groups, including Bronx organizations such as CASA New Settlement and Northwest Bronx Community Clergy Coalition. I sincerely thank them for their efforts and support. This is truly a win for the residents of the 33rd Senate District and tenants across New York State." 

Highlights included in the historic affordable housing, pro-tenant bill:

  • Extends rent regulations laws and makes them permanent
  • Repeals high rent vacancy deregulation and high income deregulation
  • Repeals of the vacancy bonus and longevity bonus
  • Makes preferential rents the base rent for lease renewal increases
  • Extends rent overcharge four-year look-back period to six years
  • Reforms rent increases for Major Capital Improvements (MCIs)
  • Reforms rent increases for Individual Apartment Improvements (IAIs)
  • Prohibits rent guidelines board from setting class-specific renewal increases
  • Establishes stronger housing security and tenant protections