Class Not Dismissed

Two Housing Rights Initiative suits against property owners, both involving deregulation of units in buildings with J-51 benefits, were granted class action status by judges in Manhattan and the Bronx. These are the first cases of more than 40 initiated by HRI where class action status was granted.
Adding to the list of anti-owner legislation on the so-called progressive agenda, State Senator Brian Benjamin has introduced legislation to extend the statute of limitations on rent overcharge complaints from four to six years.
Federal subsidies, particularly for public housing and Section 8, are the solution to meeting affordable housing needs according a report issued Thursday by theCitizens Budget Commission. Analyzing 2017 Housing Vacancy Survey Data, the report found that 921,000 New York City households paid more than 30% of income for rent, and half of them paid more than 50%, after accounting for rent and nutrition subsidies. Looking at low income households that aren’t rent burdened, the report noted that 91,000 received Section 8 benefits; 82,000 were in public housing; and 50,000 were in rent stabilized apartments.
The IRS hasn’t finalized rules and the suggested census districts won’t be officially adopted until April, but it is already getting late to begin organizing investment funds for the Opportunity Zones created by the 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. The progam will allow real estate investors to exclude capital gains from investments in the zones held for ten years, and also exclude gains from sales elsewhere that are reinvested in the zones.
The New York City Council is moving forward October 22nd with a hearing on the “Small Business Jobs Survival Act” which would entitle any commercial tenant to a ten year renewal lease, arbitration of terms with the building owner, and right of first refusal on leases negotiated with new prospective tenants.
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