City Council approves landlord repair bill

Speaker Christine Quinn
Speaker Christine Quinn

The City Council unanimously approved a new bill Wednesday aimed at cracking down on landlords who maintain unsafe and unsanitary conditions, the New York Daily News reported.

The bill would have landlords pay steep fines — $1,000 per unit or $5,000 per building — or sign an affidavit swearing they’ve repaired dangerous or dirty conditions. Landlords who lie in the affidavit could face criminal charges.

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Though the city currently requires landlords to keep buildings in good condition, critics say that landlords have been getting away with stopgap fixes, instead of tackling the underlying structural problems at their properties.

“A good landlord sees a hole in somebody’s ceiling and figures out what the problem is,” said City Council Speaker Christine Quinn. “But a bad landlord, a slumlord … they’re not going to do anything because what they really want is that tenant to get out.”

The bill was expected to get City Council approval, as The Real Deal previously reported, and Mayor Bloomberg is expected to sign it into law, the News said. Under the bill, city inspectors will be charged with determining which buildings frequently have code violations, and landlords would have four to six months to make the required repairs. [NYDN] —Hiten Samtani