I don’t have to tell you that every day, tenants in our district are being forced out of their homes by huge rent increases, and right now, we have no way to fight it.
Landlords eager for gentrification can evict people just to charge someone else a higher rent. This is devastating our communities, and making it impossible for working people to survive. Whether you live in market rate or rent stabilized housing, you should be protected from greedy landlords who will push you out on the street to make an extra buck.
A bill to protect tenants from these evictions was introduced in 2019’s legislative session, but was killed. The “Housing Security and Protection Act” (Assembly Bill A5030A, formerly known as “Good Cause Eviction”) prevents tenants in market-rate apartments from being evicted for not paying an “unconscionable” increase in rent. This legislation was one of 9 housing bills in the last session, and the only one that didn’t pass in the huge Housing Stability and Tenant Protection Act of 2019 (HSTPA).
The real estate industry doesn’t want this bill to pass, and nor do many in Albany who depend on real estate for huge campaign donations. I don’t take money from real estate, and I never will. That’s why I need your help!
As Assembly Member, I will not only co-sponsor this bill, but I will pressure leadership to pass it, and whip support in my conference to get the votes. I’ll also make sure the final version of this legislation sets rent limits that truly help keep our tenants in their homes. I will not let this bill get watered down by real estate lobbyists, big investment banks, or corporate donors.
As important as this bill is, I don’t only want to help renters stay in their apartments, I plan to build a path to home ownership for our community. Home ownership is one of the dearest parts of the American Dream to our working class and immigrant neighbors, because it is one of the best ways to join the middle class and create a secure, long term investment for our families. My own family of poor and working class immigrants finally joined the middle class when my parents bought a house in Sunset Park in the 1970’s, so I understand how home ownership can improve the lives of many generations.
In my next email, I will introduce Mitchell-Lama 2.0, my plan to create hundreds of thousands of affordable apartments that would be focused on building homeownership. Mitchell-Lama 2.0 would finally provide racial and housing justice by giving preference to long-time residents of historically red-lined communities, helping our community create intergenerational wealth and become part of a secure middle class.