Sunday, October 27, 2019

Landlords and Tenants

At a meeting of the Common Council Housing and Transportation Committee back in August, soon after the Statewide Housing Stability and Tenant Protection Act had been passed, the committee was discussing holding a forum to educate the public about the new law. Alderman Eileen Halloran (Fifth Ward) asked that the session include building owners, suggesting this could make for better tenant-owner relations. She brought up the possibility that regulations to protect tenants could have the unintended consequence of owners taking units off the market. Alderman Tiffany Garriga (Second Ward), who chairs the committee, responded to Halloran's suggestion by saying, "This is just for the tenant, because the landlord is going to rent regardless."

The forum that was discussed at the beginning of August took place on September 24 at Bliss Towers. Led by Garriga, with Rebecca Garrard from Citizen Action of New York and Jumaane Williams, public advocate for New York City, the meeting was only for tenants not for the owners of rental properties. Dan Udell was there to document the meeting. His video can be viewed here

At the Common Council Legal Committee meeting last week, comments by Nicole Vidor made Halloran's concerns in August seem prescient. She said the new rent laws were great for tenants but were frightening for landlords. She went on to say, "People don't want to rent their property anymore. People are feeling very uncertain about renting." She suggested that the Council might help landlords understand the implications of the law for them. Garriga, who sits on the Legal Committee, told Vidor that the Housing Stability and Tenant Protection Act had been discussed in the Housing and Transportation Committee. In those committee meetings, however, the landlord's point of view never seemed to get much attention. 

Earlier today, Ed Nabozny sent Gossips this image of a newspaper clipping.

Scanning it quickly, I wondered where it was from and why I knew nothing about such a meeting meant to bring together landlords and tenants. A second email from Nabozny informed me that the item had appeared in the newspaper on January 29, 1958.


  1. Along with the unintended consequence of owners removing units from the market, they'll be less motivated to maintain them.