Rent regulation laws up for renewal again

February 21, 2011 01:06PM

The laws that cap rent increases on 1 million city apartments expire in June, and landlord groups, tenant advocates and politicians all agree that they should be extended, according to the Daily News. Last time the laws were up for a renewal, in 2003, Senate Republicans threatened to let them expire and ended up forcing the Democrats to accept a simple renewal. Now the Democrats think they have a better chance of getting a good deal for tenants. The real estate industry is desperate to renew a tax break known as 421-a, which spurs new apartment building development, and Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver says developers won’t get that renewed unless they agree to change the rent laws. “The challenge is how we are able to achieve a pro-rent-regulation agenda,” said Vito Lopez, chairman of the Housing Committee. If all sides are able to reach a deal, they hope to connect it to the budget that Gov. Andrew Cuomo wants to deliver by March 31. A similar attempt last summer to link the rent laws, 421-a and other housing issues in one package of bills collapsed after weeks of talks, sources said. [NYDN]