DN Daily Politics: Sen. Espaillat states it would be a tragedy to only pass an extension of rent laws by June 15.

Adriano Espaillat

June 08, 2011

Nothing Up But Weinergate -- AND Rent Regs

BY Celeste Katz

That June 15th deadline for the expiration of rent regulations may not be such a hard deadline after all.

Our Glenn Blain reports:

“We can always do extensions,” state Sen. Dean Skelos told reporters this afternoon, casting doubt on whether a final agreement can be reached the existing laws expire next week.

Skelos said there have only been “very, very preliminary discussions” with the Assembly and Gov. Cuomo on the rent laws.

“Nothing of real substance,” Skelos said, before noting that the deadline is still “next Wednesday, that’s an eternity away.”

Tenant advocates promptly rejected the idea of a temporary extender, saying the time is now to reach a new agreement that extends and enhances the rent regulations.

“That’s [a] tragedy,” state Sen. Adriano Espaillat (D-Manhattan), said about a temporary extender.  

“As [Skelos] would understand how folks who feel when they have to leave there home because of high property taxes, it is the same type of feeling when somebody has to leave their apartment because the rent is too high or because they don’t know whether or not they are going to be able to renew their lease,” Espaillat said. “That will throw the city, in particular, into chaos, the uncertainty of it.”

Espaillat and other tenant advocates also expressed disappointment that Cuomo failed to attend Sunday's rally sponsored by the NYS Black, Puerto Rican, Hispanic & Asian Legislative Caucus.

“No matter what he said, he would have made a statement,” said Sen. Ruth Hassell-Thompson, the caucus chairwoman. “And I think, somehow, when you are talking about 2.5 million people and he doesn’t show, he doesn’t send anybody – yes I know he had a couple of parades yesterday and other events – but I think it was something, with an issue of this volume that’s going to affect so many people in New York State, particularly in the boroughs, I would have thought that he would have made some effort.”