Pictorial History of the Tenant Movement

28. NYSTNC's successful campaign in 1983 to move responsibility for the enforcement of rent regulations from the landlord-operated Rent Stabilization Association to the state Division of Housing was seen as a victory. However, the endeavor of the senate Republican leadership to placate the real estate industry by giving the RSA responsibility for designing the new code was a threat. Consequently, the tenant movement protested against adoption of the code when hearings were held by the city administration in February 1984. Their efforts were successful: the code was rejected. Among those who spoke against the RSA code at a tenant-organized press conference were Bonny Brower, director of the Association of Neighborhood Housing Developers, and Jane Benedict, chairperson of the Metropolitan Council on Housing -- two of the three major tenant federations. Women leaders had at last achieved prominence in the upper levels of the tenant movement in New York. Illustration 28 shows politicians lining up to speak behind the two tenant leaders: Assemblyman Eliot Engel, city councilman Robert Dryfoos, and state senators Leon Bogues and Franz Leichter were anxious to show their support for the tenant position. Photo by Tom Robins for "City Limits."

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