The Real Deal New York

Cuomo to order landlords to re-register 50K apartments for rent protection

Units receiving J-51 benefits were illegally deregulated

January 06, 2016 08:30AM

Andrew Cuomo

Andrew Cuomo

Gov. Andrew Cuomo will order landlords who received J-51 tax benefits to re-register 50,000 units for rent protection, following court rulings that they were removed from the rolls illegally.

The order, which is expected to go out Wednesday, will affect 4,149 buildings throughout the city; 1,986 in Manhattan, 859 in Brooklyn, 741 in Queens, 657 in the Bronx and 16 on Staten Island.

The Division of Homes and Community Renewal will send notices to the buildings’ landlords, who received J-51 subsidies between 1994 and 2015 and who registered their apartments as being exempt from rent-regulation following a vacancy, the New York Post reported.

That exemption allowed landlords – who weren’t named – to charge higher rents, and to raise them faster than would otherwise have been possible.

The state’s Attorney General’s Office has been investigating a related issue for about a year: landlords receiving benefits under the 421a tax abatement have failed to register some units affordable, as required.

About 5,500 buildings receiving 421a or J-51 benefits as of 2013 had not been registered as rent-regulated with DHCP, according to an investigation by ProPublica. [NYP]Ariel Stulberg

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