Newburgh jumps on good cause eviction train
City is at least third in state to pass tenant protections
The slow drip of New York municipalities approving good cause eviction laws continued this week, as Newburgh joined the small but growing list of towns passing the tenant protection legislation.
Newburgh passed good cause eviction measures on Monday, City & State reported. The Orange County city followed in the footsteps of Albany and Hudson.
Kingston, Poughkeepsie and Ithaca are among the other cities where such measures are being considered, the publication reported. In Kingston, for instance, a bill is being sponsored by the mayor and a majority of the mayor’s colleagues, suggesting passage is likely. New Paltz is also pondering a bill.
The good cause bill in Newburgh passed in the city council by a 6-0 vote, with one abstention, according to the Times Herald-Record. The law is set to take effect Jan. 1, two weeks before the state’s eviction moratorium is set to expire.
Good cause eviction laws prevent landlords from removing tenants except under extenuating circumstances. The laws also limit landlords’ abilities to increase rent by a certain amount, which has drawn criticism from property owners — and praise from its advocates — that good cause is a form of rent control.
As more cities pass or consider the legislation, the question is whether or not the state will consider a more sweeping law. Compassionate New York, a coalition of tenant advocates and activists, is pushing for policy changes.
A bill first proposed in 2019 that has since been tweaked barred eviction for rent increases exceeding 3 percent annually or 150 percent of the region’s Consumer Price Index, whichever is higher. Hudson’s law caps the annual increase at 5 percent.
Gov. Kathy Hochul last week signed two bills, including one that guarantees stabilized leases cannot be voided or used as collateral if a tenant files for eviction. Landlords fear her signing of the legislation is a harbinger of a statewide good cause eviction law.
[City & State] — Holden Walter-Warner