Affordable Housing


Platform ︎

  1. The pandemic has created an unprecedented housing crisis. We need to help pandemic-affected neighbors satisfy overdue rents. We begin by cancelling or adjusting rents for tenants
    –– prioritizing low income, vulnerable, working class, and middle-class residents. Create relief programs (including forgiveness of mortgage payments) for small residential and mixed use owners.
  2. Expand the use, budget & awareness of relief programs like One Shot Deal & CityFHEPS while assessing the thresholds necessary for approval for each. The One Shot deal, for example, is an emergency assistance program that helps people who can’t meet an expense due to an unexpected situation or event. Emergency assistance is provided for, but not limited to, the following situations:
    • Homelessness
    • Eviction or dispossession
    • Utility disconnection or pending disconnection
    • Fire or natural disaster
    • Domestic violence
    • Circumstances that affect the health and safety of the individual or family
  3. Lobby the state to address & assess the impact of COVID on tenants and small owners. Work with the state legislatures to obtain grants and subsidies. Financial support that is direct to residents & owners; or, handled by viable CBOs -- in their prospective districts. 
  4. Fight Gentrification & support the growth all of my neighbors!! (Read bullets five to nineteen.)
  5. Re-examine the use of ULURP: Better transparency for the community; influence and support developments that create local jobs (union & non-union) and benefit the local economy; emphasize MWBE & local vendor use; with CB 3 or 8, receive quarterly updates from developers to monitor process; and, expect an affordable housing plan uses more than AMI or 80/20 determinants.
  6. Reimagine ULURP: Increase the power/influence of the Community Boards; give community boards a voting options for multiple members of the BSA & Planning Commission; reduce the number of members the Mayor can install; assess the non-democratic nature of the Planning Commission; legislate the mandatory hiring of a planning & housing director for all Community Boards. Racial impact studies. 
  7. Deemphasize the use of AMI (Area Median Income) and investigate using a system that calculates using the mode income sets, rather than median, of a zip code or Community Board/District. The mode calculation presents income set that occur frequently.
  8. Continue fighting deed theft and improper use of TPT (Third Party Transfer):
    • Continue to use TPT to protect tenants from absentee and inept landlords.
    • Ensure that TPT is used in its original purpose, which is to create affordable housing from cash strapped buildings. Ensure that buildings are transferred to non profit’s with a track record of creating truly affordable housing.
    • Re-examination of the 80/20 affordable housing opt-in and discuss expanding the twenty percent to forty percent. In terms of buildings being turned over to for-profit developers, ensure that there is a 40% commitment clause to create affordable housing units within new buildings based on a metric outside AMI. Build affordable housing for middle, working class and challenged income.
  9. Call on the Mayor to make changes to or abolish the 40x/80x rule. In New York City, people pay 45% of income towards rent. (The 40/80x rule suggests prospective tenants earn 40 times the rent to be eligible for an apartment, guarantors must earn 80 times the rent).
  10. Make a city-wide program for subsidizing the creation of housing co-ops amongst lower and working class. Incentivize tenants to organize and purchase their buildings from private landlords.
  11. With NYCHA stating it is addressing culture and administration issues, support the possible changes & assess system-wide needs.
  12. Work with state and federal electeds to achieve a fully funded NYCHA.
  13. Address RAD with tenants to ensure the needs of the tenants outweigh political jargon. When RAD processes are used, work to protect tenants & request detailed research on the private firms via Committee Oversight Hearings. 
  14. Call for collective tenant management & control of NYCHA.
  15. Fight for robust service, construction, maintenance and capital improvement. Fight in the Council while lobbying state and federal legislators for resources and funding. 
  16. Expand the NYCHA-based hirings and tenant association programs. With the latter, advocate for Resident Advisory Board & Citywide Council of Presidents -- their influence and powers require review and possible expansion.
  17. Fight predatory realtors (renters, small & mid-sized owners).
  18. Work with lending institutions to create pathways (including workshops and credit care) to small home ownership and disrupting inflated housing markets, esp first time residential & mixed-use.
  19. Continue search and sweep current legislation that can hurt small owners & tenants; like Local Law 152:
    • Defeat bills --  like our work to defeat this year's Fire Sprinkler Bill & galvanized community support -- that hurt small owners & renters.
    • Create a task force to investigate the unsolved repairs and issues highlighted within Jumaane Williams 100 worst landlord list.
  20. End homelessness. In District 36, 1 out of 5 students has experienced homelessness in the last five years. The majority of homeless in Brooklyn are families with children between the ages of 0-5. We need to rethink eligibility for families applying for shelter while easing the requirements needed for  families seeking refuge. Facing an unprecedented evictions crisis, call for the creation of more emergency shelters in vacant or underused hotels and office buildings. If we are moving towards a work from home standard for office jobs, lots of spaces should be available for housing.

Actions ︎

  • Petitioned and testified against an opportunistic developers in the district, to save the Hebron School, in North Crown Heights.
  • Protested against COVID eviction at the Brooklyn Housing Court, supporting  the Crown Heights Tenants Union and the Legal Aid Society.
  • Teamed up with a legal aid society lawyer to create “Know Your Rights: Evictions” fliers to distribute in  the district. We focused on the buildings owned by owners  listed in the top ten of Jumaane Williams 2019 100 worst landlord list.
  • Organizing  community forums, put forth amendments, and provided testimony at a City Council hearing  against Local Law 152. The team is still fighting for the additional amendments, with the passing of the extension to June 2021:
- Create a tier system for the inspection costs, based on number gas lines
- Proper and robust notifications from the Department of Buildings
- Organized community forums and petitions against Intro 1146, Fire Sprinklers systems for residential and commercial buildings 40 feet or higher
- Publicly supporting City Council Bills that assess the COVID affect on housing within the creative industries
- Focusing on Central Brooklyn Fine Artists & Creatives

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