June 10 was a very exciting day. The NY State Assembly voted in favor of the loft tenant community’s request to remove the Loft Law application deadline by passing A9545 and delivering it to the Senate. Continue reading
NYCLT and LMLT have been working together to advocate for changes to the Loft Law in 2014. For the past few months we have focused on getting a bill sponsored which will remove the March 11, 2014 deadline for coverage application and landlord-initiated registration applications by meeting with local representatives at the city and state level. We’re grateful to the many community members who have volunteered their time to attend these meetings. We’re also thankful for the many tenants who have participated in our online community survey or who have volunteered to share their story, so we can provide representatives with more details about how the Loft Law impacts our community.
We believe the March 11, 2014 deadline should be eliminated because it excludes tenants from the protection of the law for no meaningful reason, and undermines the remedial nature of the law and the intent that it be broadly applied. Tenants who are denied Loft Law coverage will not be replaced by manufacturing uses – instead the units will stay residential and the rents will rise. Affordable housing units will be lost. Many owners will continue to rent the spaces residentially without making any effort to legalize their buildings and bring them up to fire and safety code.
In early May a bill was introduced to the State Assembly (A9545-2013) sponsored by Assemblymember Deborah Glick, co-sponsored by Keith Wright (Chair, Housing Committee), Barbara Clark, Joan Millman, Vivian Cook, Linda Rosenthal and Martiza Davila with multi-sponsorship by Margaret Markey and José Rivera. We thank these representatives for supporting live/work tenants and for their effort to create more rent stabilized housing throughout NYC. As of Friday, May 30, this bill has moved to the floor and has been put on the calendar for a vote – the loft tenant community is hopeful this can happen before the legislative summer recess (June 18).
On Sept 11th 2013 the NYC Loft Board published the final rules governing buildings covered by the Loft Law. These rules affect tenants covered under the 2010 expansion and 2013 amendment, as well as those covered under the original law. (Changes are minimal for “old Loft Law” buildings, except for the reduction in the milestone increases.)
With the rules published, the six-month clock has started ticking for tenants and landlords to apply for Loft Law coverage. The final deadline is March 11, 2014! If a unit is not registered by that time it may not be eligible for coverage. However, since coverage goes with the unit, it will still be possible for landlords to amend their registrations to reflect new tenants, or for tenants to apply to become the protected occupants of covered units, after that date. Continue reading