Kingston gets “good cause eviction” as backers make Hudson Valley push

Second upstate city to opt into state law

Kingston Adopts Good Cause Eviction Amid Hudson Valley Push

From left: Kingston Alderwoman Michele Hirsch and Housing Justice For All’s Cea Weaver (Getty, Housing Justice for All, Facebook/Michele Hirsch)

One month after Albany became New York’s first city to adopt “good cause eviction,” Kingston has followed suit.

In a unanimous decision, the Hudson Valley city’s Common Council voted to opt in to the state law passed with the 2025 budget, the Daily Freeman reported.

Tenants at the Tuesday meeting hailed the decision as a triumph. Advocacy group Housing Justice For All said in a statement that the city’s renters could now “breathe a sigh of relief.”

That’s a sharp turn from the spring when the Democratic Socialists of America, a group tied to Housing Justice For All, said real estate lobbyists had “effectively defeated [good cause] by watering it down.”

They weren’t wrong: The measure that Gov. Kathy Hochul let through is far weaker than what advocates sought. It says tenants in good standing must be offered a lease renewal and requires landlords pursuing an eviction to justify any rent increase of more than 10 percent or inflation plus 5 percent, whichever is smaller.

Kingston Alderwoman Michele Hirsch said the threshold is currently 8.45 percent for Kingston, the Daily Freeman reported. It applies to landlords with two or more units in buildings constructed before 2009. Buildings with up to 10 units are exempt if the landlord lives in one.

The version state Sen. Julia Salazar introduced in 2019 would have let tenants challenge evictions resulting from a rent hike of more than 3 percent or 1.5 times the regional inflation rate, whichever is higher.

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Still, the state law is more likely to endure than the version of good cause that Kingston adopted in 2022. The city repealed its law after a state judge struck down a similar measure passed by Albany in 2021.

If progressives get their way, Kingston and Albany will be the first of many localities to adopt the state’s version of good cause. Housing Justice For All and like-minded advocates are targeting cities across the Hudson Valley and beyond, City & State reported.

Ithaca could be next. Its Common Council is expected to vote on a legislative memo next week, according to

Meanwhile, rent stabilization has spread in the region. Poughkeepsie’s City Council unanimously adopted the Emergency Tenant Protection Act last month, joining Newburgh and Kingston. The 2019 rent law allowed localities statewide to enact rent stabilization if they could show a sub-5 percent vacancy rate.

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It’s likely that Poughkeepsie will face legal pushback. Hudson Valley landlords challenged the efficacy of the vacancy studies Newburgh and Kingston conducted. A judge in the Newburgh case halted the city’s attempt to form a Rent Guidelines Board.

Kingston tenants, though, came out on top. A state appeals court the same month affirmed the study and upheld the 15 percent rent reduction the city passed — the first such rollback in New York state’s history.

Richard Lanzone, head of the property owners association that lodged those suits, told the Times Union last month that his group also plans to challenge Pougkeepsie’s vacancy study.

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