Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Tonight: Tenants Host Bronx RGB Hearing

The Rent Guidelines Board is a public body. As such, it has a responsibility to seek input from the public, including rent stabilized tenants. This year, the RGB is holding just one public hearing, in lower Manhattan, primarily during work hours. This is not only insufficient, but unacceptable. After an offer of a free meeting space and a guaranteed turnout of tenants in the Bronx was rejected by the Board, tenants mobilized to hold their own hearing, drawing press coverage and the support of numerous elected officials. That hearing will be held tonight. Tenants strongly encourage RGB members to attend, as this is the best opportunity to hear directly from them about conditions in rent stabilized apartments, the toll of escalating rents, and the impact a high RGB increase would have on rent stabilized households. 

Information about the tenant-led hearing is below.

For Planning Purposes: Wednesday, June 5, 2013
Contact: Raymond Rodriguez,, 646-200-5309

Bronx Residents To Hold Public Hearing on Proposed Rent Increases After Rent Guidelines Board Overlooks Outer Boroughs
Board Proposes Over 6% Rent Hike Despite “No” Vote By Tenant Members

WHAT: Bronx residents will hold their own public hearing to express opposition to the Rent Guidelines Board’s proposal to increase rents between 6.25% and 9.5% on stabilized apartments. This year the RGB is refusing to hold a hearing in the outer boroughs, making it difficult for working families and tenants to provide input on the rent hikes. The Board’s two Tenant Members, who voted against the proposed increases, will facilitate the hearing.

WHO: Bronx tenants who will be impacted by proposed rent increases, RGB’s Tenant Members, the Community Development Project at the Urban Justice Center, New Settlement Apartments’ Community Action for Safe Apartments (CASA), Elected officials include: Speaker Christine Quinn, Public Advocate Bill de Blasio, Councilwoman Helen Foster, Councilwoman Annabel Palma, Councilman Ydanis Rodriguez, Assemblyman Brian Kavanaugh 

WHEN: Wednesday, June 5, 5:30PM

WHERE: New Settlement Community Center, 1501 Jerome Ave. at 172nd St., Bronx. D or 4 train to 170th St.

BACKGROUND:  The RGB, which establishes rent adjustments for 1 million dwelling units and whose members are appointed by the Mayor, recently adopted a proposal to increase rents up to 6.25% for stabilized tenants with 1-year leases and up to 9.5% for 2-year leases. The Board’s two Tenant Members voted against the proposed increases because these increases are unaffordable to tenants throughout the city, especially in low-income areas of the outer boroughs.

Traditionally, the RBG holds outer borough public hearings for tenants to share their opinions on the proposed increases, but this year the Board decided it will only hold one daytime hearing in Manhattan therefore not taking into consideration tenants from the Bronx. The Bronx, where the average family income is $38,000, has the highest concentration of rent-stabilized apartments.

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