City Council Puts Slumlords on Notice, Passes 18 Tenant Protection Bills in a Day

Posted on: August 10th, 2017 at 5:17 am by

Bathroom in Mahfar’s 102 Norfolk St., July 2014

Yesterday, the city took another big step towards enforcing landlord accountability.  City Council passed a whopping 18 bills that provide a framework for greater protections for tenants against harassment and unsafe living conditions.

Among the bills is Councilmember Helen Rosenthal’s Intro. 1523, which would create an Office of the Tenant Advocate within the DOB. It would be responsible for monitoring Tenant Protection Plans as well as fielding complaints and questions from tenants about construction issues. (Big real estate probably isn’t happy about this.)

Other approved bills are aimed specifically at ending construction as a form of harassment. Employing such tactics is a growing problem, particularly here on the Lower East Side.

Rosethal reassured, “While many at DOB do important work on behalf of tenants, the bureaucracy just isn’t in place to make tenants’ voices heard. This bill will change that, giving tenants a dedicated watchdog and workhorse on their behalf…”

Out of the 18 bills, the three written by Council Member Rosenthal include:

  • Intro. 1523, which would create an Office of the Tenant Advocate within the Department of Buildings.
  • Intro. 944, a part of the Stand for Tenant Safety package, which would impose additional penalties for performing construction work without a permit and increase oversight for buildings where such work has been performed.
  • Intro. 347, which would allow Housing Court judges to award damages to tenants who bring successful harassment claims against their landlord.

Correction: Proper names mistakenly mentioned in a previous version of this article have been removed.

Share

Streets

Recent Stories

Shear Luck: FRED Salon Finds Refuge in the East Village

Another retail victim to report on upper Orchard Street. The FRED.nyc hair salon is now gone. According to signage on the shuttered security gate at 192 Orchard, the five-year-old business recently relocated to the East Village. The move to 40 East Third Street was a long time coming for eponymous owner Fred Connors, who braved […]

Grand Street Guild Files Plans for 15-Story Affordable Housing Tower

New towers are coming to Broome Street on the Lower East Side. Now we have sight of the first newcomer. Back in January of 2018, the Grand Street Guild nonprofit officially announced the imminent construction of two, as-of-right 15-story apartments on its property, plus a parking garage. All 400 of the proposed units are earmarked […]

TongKatsu Replaced by ‘Otaku Katsu’ on Rivington Street

Over on Rivington Street, TongKatsu becomes… …Otaku Katsu. Ben Tong, owner of the former, reportedly reassigned the lease after its shutter to husband-wife team Chef Dimitri Voutsinas and Christine Argao-Voutsinas. Otaku Katsu occupies the same below-grade space at 137 Rivington, and offers a variety of katsu and Japanese sando bentos, in addition to fresh made […]

DOT ‘Street Seat’ Goes Live Outside Dudley’s on Orchard Street

Just in time for the forthcoming return of Dudley’s, Orchard Street now boasts a new row of public seating. Beside another recently installed bike corral. And it’s all part of the city’s Street Seat program. More than a half-dozen tables and chairs are stationed between the corner of Broome down to Cafe Katja. As previously […]

Crowbar-Wielding Attacker Smashes Windows of Roni-Sue’s Chocolates on Forsyth Street [VIDEO]

Earlier this week, we reported on the dangerous conditions plaguing Forsyth Street amidst the city’s work on the subway system. The MTA is currently swapping out the ventilation plant fifteen feet beneath the roadbed along the eastern perimeter of Sara D. Roosevelt Park. Originally built in 1962, this section of the subway was identified as […]