Friday, December 14, 2012

HPD wants slumlord bill passed

From the Daily News:

Each year, city taxpayers pay again and again for emergency repairs on slumlord buildings because owners refuse to fix underlying problems.

Mold is painted over, or crumbling plaster is patched up, while the busted water pipe behind the wall that's causing the problem remains just that - busted.

Last year the city spent $26.3 million on Band-aid jobs like this, with inspectors often returning repeatedly to the same building to issue the same violations, according to the Department of Housing Preservation and Development.

A City Council hearing Thursday took up a proposed new law that rejects the quick fix and holds landlords accountable for repairing underlying conditions.

The bill’s sponsor, Councilwoman Gale Brewer (D-Manhattan) said the quick fix frustrates tenants and the city.

Tired of slapping the same buildings with the same citations, HPD Deputy Commissioner Vito Mustaciuolo pressed for the bill’s passage at a hearing Thursday.

“Buildings where the symptom is treated without treating the cause typically have systemic leaks or water penetration,” he said. “The same conditions occur and reoccur in multiple apartments.”

HPD wants to target buildings with repeat water leaks, ferret out underlying causes, then require landlords to fix the cause or face a $1,000 per unit and $5,000 per building fine.

Landlords must sign affidavits swearing the problem is resolved and face criminal charges if they lie.


Anonymous said...

So who's going to hold the slumlords at New York City Housing Authority accountable?

Anonymous said...

Very good point

Anonymous said...

Put a lien on or seize a slumlord's property!
That's the only kind of language they understand.

Anonymous said...

As long as the rental market is distorted by controls and subsidies, the renters are not able to simply move to a better-maintained apartment.

Anonymous said...

Vito is the problem. What is Vito really doing besides taking pay offs from slumlords? He is making a bit of noise to up his leverage and get even more.

The City is settling for pennies on the dollar when slumlords are fined in Housing Court, the Housing Preservation Part & under a Republican administration ie: Bloomberg- slumlords as a matter of routine, break the law aided and abetted by NYC Housing Court Judges whose salaries are paid by the taxpayer. The bottom line is that we, the taxpayers are burdened with this negligence.

New York City is not getting the fines that are imposed.