State lawmakers have agreed on one thing in the enormous debacle over expiring rent regulation and 421-a laws, and that's to extend their session, retroactively, by five dayswhich buys them until Tuesday to make some decisions. The extension gives lawmakers more time to hammer out the terms of an uncertain deal, and gives vulnerable tenants protection during the lapse.
When the legislation ran out on Monday, rent-regulated apartments in theory became market-rate, but landlords are still beholden to their lease agreements with regulated tenants, of which there are believed to be about 2 million throughout the city. The Journal says that the Democrat-controlled State Assembly is looking to strengthen rent regulation laws so that fewer apartments can be moved to market-rate, but the Republican-controlled Senate is at odds with that plan, and wants to implement an income verification program for tenants in rent-regulated buildings.
Both the rent regulation laws and 421-a tax abatement program are seen as well-intentioned policies in need of tweaks to eliminate loopholes and outdated sections. Mayor Bill de Blasio presented a revised 421-a policy to the State Senate that ultimately won the support of the pro-development Real Estate Board of New York, but didn't make it much further with the actual politicians. Other camps within the state government have also been rumored to be hammering out their own plans. The Daily News reports that state legislators said on Thursday that they were far from a deal.
De Blasio and Governor Andrew Cuomo, both Democrats, have expressed contempt for the idea of letting the policies lapse, referring to a New York City without these regulations as "a nightmare," "the end of NYC as we know it," and paving the way for "pandemonium."
· Deal Reached to Temporarily Extend New York City Rent Rules [WSJ]
· New York Legislature Agrees to 5-Day Extension of Rent Regulations [NYT]
· Tracking The Imminent Expiration of NYC Housing Laws [Curbed]
· New York's Great 421-a Debate: The Uncertain Future of Trading Affordable Housing for Tax Breaks [Curbed]