No rent hikes for regulated apts. with 1- and 2-year leases

WHITE PLAINS - Tenants in regulated apartments in Westchester will see
no rent increases for both one- and two-year leases in the coming year
under a decision tonight by the Westchester Rent Guidelines Board.

After the meeting at the County Courthouse, several of the board
members said they had never seen a decision not to increase rents at

The two
landlord representatives on the board and two officials from the
Building and Realty Institute walked out of the meeting before the
completion of a second vote on increases for a handful of buildings
where landlords don't pay for heat and hot water.

and their advocates clapped as the proposal got the five votes needed
to pass. The tenants soon began comparing notes on whether their leases
came up in time to take the guideline.

like it because my lease comes up in January," said Cecelia Ferrari,
who came to the meeting with a group from the Beacon Hill Garden
apartments in Dobbs Ferry.

But the celebration was quickly followed by talk that the landlords might sue to block the guideline.

increases will apply to leases signed in the year after Oct. 1 for
apartments subject to the Emergency Tenant Protection Act.

landlord representatives first proposed increases of 4 percent for
one-year leases with a $40 minimum per month and 7 percent for two-year
leases with a $70 minimum increase, lower than many recent years. It
failed two-five, with Joe Whelan, the chairman, declining to vote.
There are eight members currently sitting on the nine-member board.

tenant member Genevieve Harris Roche proposed a 2 percent rollback for
one-year leases and 1 percent rollback for two-year leases. That also
got only two yes votes, from the tenant members.

document may contain copyrighted material the use of which may not have been
specifically authorized by the copyright owner. Tenants Together is making this
article available on our website in an effort to advance the understanding of
tenant rights issues in California. We believe that this constitutes a 'fair
use' of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the
U.S. Copyright Law. If you wish to use this copyrighted material for purposes
of your own that go beyond 'fair use,' you must obtain permission from the
copyright owner.

Help build power for renters' rights: