City panel approves hike in rents in stable apartments by up to 5%

The powerful panel that determined the cost of housing in the city’s nearly 1 million rent-regulated apartments voted on Tuesday night to approve the biggest increase in nearly a decade: 5% for two-year leases and single-year leases. 3.3% for leases of Rs.

The Rent Guidelines Board – trying to balance the pandemic challenges facing renters and inflation pumping operating costs of landlords – voted 5-4 to approve the controversial plan during a raucous meeting at Cooper Union in Manhattan.

Board Chairman David Rees voices outspoken tenants, “I believe this proposal balances the needs of owners who will have to pay for costs that are increasing significantly as well as For tenants who are still dealing with the effects of the pandemic.” Displeasure.

More than 2 million New Yorkers are at the mercy of the board’s guidelines. The new fare rule, which comes into effect in early October, is the sharpest hike since 2013.

The increase sat squarely in the middle of a range – from 2% to 4% for one-year leases, and 4% to 6% for two-year leases – supported by the board in a preliminary vote in early May. Mayor Adams expressed support for that limit.

The nine-member Rent Guidelines Board operates separately from City Hall, but is appointed by a mayor. Three of the current members were appointed by Adams, who followed a fine political line and introduced himself as a friend to tenants and landlords.

Two of Adams’ three appointees voted in favor of the board’s fare hike. But Adan Soltrain, a tenant representative on the mayor-appointed board, slammed City Hall in remarks before the vote.

“Shame on this administration, and any administration that puts members on this board who clearly believe the investment deserves more respect than the people,” Soltren said, adding the board’s decision. Millions of people will suffer.”

The annual inflation rate rose to 8.6% in May, a 40-year high, showing few signs of flagging and forcing the Federal Reserve to ramp up its efforts to cool the economy.

Price hikes are crushing tenants and landlords alike, and the Rent Guidelines Board has left both parties disappointed. In the days and hours before the decision, local officials put pressure on the board.

City Council President Adrienne Adams, a Queens Democrat, urged the lowest increase within limits. In testimony she presented to the fare guidelines board on Monday, the speaker said the high end of the range would “endanger a lot of New Yorkers who are unable to pay.”

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“We cannot afford to plunge hundreds of thousands of rent-regulated New Yorkers into the chaos of a housing market that doesn’t already have enough supply to meet demand,” she testified.

The board eventually settled closer to the middle.

Christina Smith, a board member representing landlords appointed by Mayer, joked that she was “trying to find a balance between the burden of paying tenants and a property owner’s ability to maintain safe, clean and livable housing.” Was getting it done.”

In a statement after the vote, Mayor Adams acknowledged that the rent increase “will be a burden for tenants in this difficult time – and it is disappointing” but added that some small landlords are “at risk of bankruptcy because of any increase over the years.” It hasn’t happened.”

“This system is broken, and we cannot pit landlords against tenants as winners and losers every year,” the mayor said in the statement. “I will fight in Albany for additional support for tenants who are at risk of missing rent payments and struggling landlords.”

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