NEW YORK, NY – Today, Rep. Michael G. Grimm (R,C,I-NY) and State Senator Martin J. Golden (R-C, I, Brooklyn) sent the attached letter to New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio urging the City to immediately crack down on the growing problem of illegal home conversions in several neighborhoods in southern Brooklyn - especially Bay Ridge and Dyker Heights - and also issued the accompanying joint statement:
“I hope that the Mayor will take a hard look and work with us on this major problem, which is especially concerning since his City housing plan specifically mentions new up-zoning as a priority” Rep. Grimm said. “For generations, neighborhoods in southeast Brooklyn like Bay Ridge and Dyker Heights have resisted overdevelopment to preserve that signature character and quality of life that make them so great. Unfortunately, the latest culprit is homeowners secretly converting one and two family homes into illegal multi-occupancy residences that are dangerous and completely out of character with the community.”
Senator Marty Golden added "The illegal conversions of one and two family homes into multiple dwellings and SRO's is plaguing our community and endangering residents. We must get a handle on this situation so to address one of the greatest challenges to our present day quality of life."
The letter (attached) notes that the rampant illegal conversions are transforming one to two-family homes into multiple dwellings and virtual single-room-occupancies (SRO) that are several times what is safe and permissible under current building codes and zoning regulations, resulting in residences that are unsafe and frequently in disrepair. The letter concludes with Rep. Grimm and Senator Golden requesting a formal meeting with all City Commissioners with jurisdiction, the Mayor’s office, and local elected officials to develop a plan to immediately and comprehensively address the problem that has residents in these neighborhoods extremely concerned.
Rep. Michael G. Grimm (NY-11) represents Staten Island and parts of southern Brooklyn in the U.S. House of Representatives. State Senator Martin J. Golden represents New York’s 22nd Senate District in the New York State Senate.