published ten times per year. monthly
theCity Limits CommunityInformationService.Inc•anonprofitolganization
devoted to disseminating infonnation concerningneighborhood revitalization. The publication
three olganizations. Thesponsor.;
Neighborhood Housing Developers.
based.nonprofithousing development groups.
atechnicalassistance and advocacy office offeringprofessionalplanningand ar
chitecturalservicesto low andmoderate income
community groups.The Center also analyzes andmonitors government policy and performance.
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Jim MendellDesign andLayout..
Vital issues of tenants rights and neighborhood preservation will sooncome surging out of the the New
remaining of the 1983 regular session -with some observers predicting recess bymid-June and others July 4th -legislators will be weighing an extraordinarynumber of housing issues, from
to the Emergency Tenant Protection
many of which are likely to become entangled with each other
negotiations.For starters, the future of New
tax incentive program forhousing rehabis
no means assured. Thoughtful community people are
a bind: on the one hand renewal of
is essential to low income housingdevelopment, but
extension without structural reform will continue
unneeded and dangerous public subsidy for the
conversions and tenantharassment that have accelerated residential and commercial displacement.The Assembly has passed a watered-down reform bill supported byGovernor Cuomo and Mayor Koch, which extends
for four years with aformula for curtailment of benefits
for-profit projects which many considerstill to be too generous to developers. Even this version may not be passedby the State Senate, which remains as ever
the thrall of the real estateindustry. After months of stating that
was a local matter and that theSenate would pass whatever legislation the city adrninistration.wanted,Senate Housing Committee chairman John Daly changed his tune onceMayor Koch signed off on the Assembly bill, and started demanding furthersubstantial pro-real estate amendments.
Daly has raised the ante even more by insistingthatthe Senatewill pass a
bill (which bill is unclear) only if the Assembly agrees to passa couple of pro-landlord measures. One bill sought for the trade wouldrestore the unlimited right of landlords (accidentally repealed last year) toevict a rent stabilized tenant when an apartmentissoughtfor theowner's
"personal"use and has been strongly opposed
tenant groups. Anothermeasure would curb tenants' right to sublet, finally established after years ofcourt cases.Daly and his boss, Senate Majority Leader Warren Anderson, are thustrying to drive a wedge between organized tenants on the one hand, andnonprofit community organizations on the other who desperately need
extended to make their local low income housing projects affordable.Neither community organizations nor tenant groups can afford tofallforthis divisive ruse. There is an equal stake for both groups
protectingtenants' rights and providing new and rehabilitated affordable housing. Housing rehabilitated without assurances of adequate rent and tenure protectionscan only spell displacement and gentrification.And protecting the rights oftenants to remain
substandard housing is also only half a strategy.The joint efforts of tenants and community organizations to extend rentprotections to small buildings with less than six unitsisone current and
citing example of the unity that this situation demands. That unity is beingtested
Albany this year.Itisessential that we make conscious efforts to
mobilize both constituencies and work cooperatively to achieve the passageof crucial housing legislation this spring.
can hang together, or
cansurely hang separately.
Cover photos by:
Pacheco (Community Management building).
3 CITY LIMITS/May 1983