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Issues: Affordable Housing

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Public Housing

  • Expand Public Housing: Expand high-quality, mixed-income public housing to increase the supply of affordable housing and end the housing affordability crisis facing over half of all renters in New York State.

  • Fund Public Housing Authorities: Increase state funding for underfunded municipal public housing authorities.

  • End 421a Subsidies to private developers of affordable units because they are a far more costly way to build affordable housing than direct public housing.

Rent Control

  • Home Rule on Rent Regulation: Repeal the Urstadt Law. New York City and other local governments should not have to get state approval for rent regulations in their local jurisdictions.

  • Statewide Rent Regulation Authorization: Expand rent regulation authorization to all local government jurisdictions for buildings with six or more units statewide.

  • Repeal Vacancy Decontrol: Vacancy decontrol encourages landlords to push out rent-stabilized tenants and bring apartments into the open market. New York City has lost nearly 250,000 rent stabilized units to vacancy decontrol since the law was enacted in 1994.
  • Repeal the Vacancy Bonus which allows landlords to increase rents 20 percent when a stabilized tenant departs.
  • Protect Preferential Rents: Eliminate the loophole that allows landlords to attract tenants at a "preferential rents" that are lower than the regulated rent and then raise the rent arbitrarily once these tenants movs in. Preferential rents should be raised proportionally with all stabilized rents.
  • Re-Regulate Deregulated Mitchell-Lama and Project-Based Section 8 Buildings: Restore rent stabilization for all Mitchell-Lama and project-based Section 8 buildings that have paid off their government mortgages and left government supervision, which is about half of the 70,000 units in these programs.

  • Cap Rents at 30% of Income: Enact a state income tax credit for renters that caps rent at 30% of income.

Tenants Rights

  • Public Housing Democracy: Election of municipal housing authority boards by tenants and staff.
  • Just Cause Eviction Law: Enact legislation to protect tenants from evictions without justifiable cause.
  • Enforce Tenants Rights and Housing Codes: Restore funding to the NYS Division of Housing and Community Renewal to support the enforcement of tenants rights and housing codes.

Protect Owner-Occupied Homes

  • Cap Property Taxes at 10% of Income: Enact state income property tax circuit breaker for homeowners that caps property tax at 10% of income.

  • Moratorium on Home Foreclosures: Require banks to refinance mortgages at homes' current market values.

  • Regular Absentee-Owned Properties: Increase registration, inspections, enforcement, and penalties for code and tax delinquency violations by bank- and investor-owned properties.

End Homelessness

  • Homes: Build enough affordable housing units to meet the need.

  • Services: Fund the public services and benefits low-income people need to make ends meet, including welfare benefits, housing vouchers, SNAP, education, jobs, public transportation, child care, health care, mental and behavioral health care, substance abuse treatment, and case management.

  • Social Inclusion: Provide homes and services in a way that actively promotes social inclusion and human connections for beneficiaries and counteracts any stigmatization of them as poor, homeless, addicted, or mentally ill, which can lead to another bout of homelessness for isolated people.

  • Prevention: Provide public services and benefits to people in need before they are rendered homeless.

Desegregate Housing by Race and Class

  • Fair Housing: Strengthen enforcement of fair housing laws.

  • Mixed-Income Public Housing: Expand high-quality, mixed-income public housing across metropolitan regions to reduce housing segregation.

  • End Source of Income Discrimination: Enact a law prohibiting discrimination against renters with any lawful, verifiable source of income, including Section 8 Housing Choice Vouchers, Social Security, Supplemental Security Income (SSI), veteran's benefits, Family Assistance, Safety Net Assistance, child support, alimony, unemployment insurance, pensions, and wages.

  • Inclusionary Zoning: Prohibit exclusionary zoning ordinances that prevent the development of low- and moderate-income housing in local jurisdictions and mandate inclusionary zoning to require a mix low-income, moderate-income, and market rate units in new or substantially rehabilitated housing developments appropriate to the housing needs of each metropolitan and rural region.

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