Senate Minority Proposes Overhaul Of 421-a Affordable Housing Program

Kevin S. Parker

May 03, 2007

OtherMembers of the Minority Confernecewho are advocating for this package include Minority Leader Malcolm Smith, Senators Liz Krueger, Marty Connor, Efrain Gonzalez, Bill Perkins, Eric Adams, John Sampson, Jose M. Serrano, John Sabini, Diane Savino, Eric Schneiderman, and Velmanette Montgomery.

In preparation for the impending expiration of 421-a, Mayor Bloomberg and the New York City Council passed legislation calling upon the State to continue the program with changes to the exclusion zone, elimination of the negotiable certificate program, a requirement that all affordable housing to be built on-site, and creating a $400 million affordable housing fund. The Mayor and City Council recommendations are excellent, but the Senate Democrats feel even more should and can be done to improve this program.

Solaria (Lifetime tax break of $6,975,475)

850 units; $620,000 - $2 million

Riverwalk Place

(Lifetime tax break of $24,682,450)

57 market-rate condos; $440,000 - $1.3 million 130 Bay Street Landing (Lifetime tax breaks of $8,300,000)

These examples illustrate the continued limitations of the City’s proposed 421-a changes.

The SenateMinority Conferenceproposes that:

2.) “Affordable” be defined as families that earn no more than 80% of the median household income for the City of New York (approximately $35,000 for a household of 4);

4.) The program should require that all affordable units be on-site, as part of the market-rate development, in order to create mixed-income communities;

6.) Owners in buildings receiving property tax exemptions should be required to pay prevailing wages to their building service workers. New York City should not subsidize the payment of substandard wages to building service workers;