City says it accidentally awarded rent break to Brooklyn’s acting DA

Eric Gonzalez, 48, earns $210K per year, but saved $1,760 from program designed to help seniors

TRD New York /
Mar.March 31, 2017 03:00 PM

Brooklyn District Attorney Eric Gonzalez

Acting Brooklyn District Attorney Eric Gonzalez had $80 per month knocked off the monthly rent at his Williamsburg apartment for nearly two years, thanks to a bureaucratic blunder made by the city.

The rent break is for senior citizens who make less than $50,000 year, the New York Daily News reported. Gonzalez, who has been acting in the role following the death of District Attorney Kenneth Thompson, earns $210,00 per year and is 48 years old, according to the newspaper.

The Senior Citizen Rent Increase Exemption program was accidentally applied to Gonzalez’s Mitchell-Lama apartment, housing officials told the paper. The city said that it first started in May 2015, after an eligible senior citizen applied for the exemption and it was award to Gonzalez instead.

Gonzalez saved around $1,760 from the benefit, and he has agreed to pay it back, according to the newspaper. A spokesperson for Gonzalez, Lis Smith, said he did not notice the break on his monthly statements.

“He was focused on the fact that his rent went up because of rent increases and surcharges and not on other details in the monthly bill,” Smith said. “He wasn’t paying attention to the little details in his rent bill.”

A housing spokesperson said the agency believes it was an isolated incident, and that an “internal audit” is now underway.

This week, a New York State Supreme Court judge upheld a rent freeze on certain one-year leases. A landlord group, the Rent Stabilization Association, had tried to argue the freeze on rent-stabilized units was politically motivated and didn’t take owners’ costs into account.  [NYDN]Miriam Hall

Related Articles

Cammeby's International Group founder Rubin Schron and, from top: 194-05 67th Avenue, 189-15 73rd Avenue and 64-05 186th Lane (Credit: Google Maps)

Ruby Schron lands $500M refi for sprawling Queens apartment portfolio

Wendy Silverstein, co-head of WeWork’s real-estate fund, is out

WeWork’s side businesses are fizzling

From left: 254 Water Street, 45-01 Northern Boulevard and 34-08 46th Street (Credit: Google Maps)

Here’s what the $10M-$30M investment sales market looked like last week

(Illustration by Andrew Colin Beck)

How much are NYC hotels hurting?

Home foreclosures dropped nearly 20% in Q3, report shows

Normandy Founder Finn Wentworth, Columbia CEO E. Nelson Mills, 799 Broadway and 250 Church Street (Credit: Google Maps)

Columbia acquiring Normandy for $100M in New York real estate’s latest megamerger

WeWork abandons Seattle co-living plan, Barneys bidding begins: Daily digest