The Real Deal New York

Bronx City Council member pushes “bad actors bill” again

James Vacca wants the DOB to deny building permits if owners owe the city $25K or more
April 18, 2016 10:15AM

From left: Rick Chandler and James Vacca

From left: Rick Chandler and James Vacca

Bronx City Council member James Vacca is once again pressing for the city to deny building permits if a developer or property owner owes $25,000 or more in unpaid fines.

Vacca first introduced the legislation, known the “bad actors bill,” in 2010.

The bill would also require that every permit application filed with the Department of Buildings include the name and address of the owner.

It would also include information about the owner’s properties and if they owe money and how much, DNAinfo reported.

Last month, Crain’s reported that the city is owed $1.6 billion in quality-of-life fines, known as Environmental Control Board violations.

Many developers and owners use liability limited companies on permits, and the Real Estate Board of New York and Building Owners and Managers Association of Greater New York opposed the measure when it was introduced six years ago.

The U.S. Treasury implemented a rule in March that it would track cash sales in New York City real estate above $3 million made through LLCs, but it has not stopped buyers.

Vacca’s legislation would not apply to permits that are needed to fix dangerous conditions, according to DNAinfo.

Amid a construction boom, there has been an increase in construction accidents. Since 2009, construction has tripled, with 88 million square feet built in 2015. Over the same period, accidents have doubled, with a total of 433 citywide in 2015. [DNAinfo]Dusica Sue Malesevic