Date: Sun, 03 May 1998 02:11:48 -0400
Subject: Tenants Online 5/2/98

Tenants Online                                           5/2/98
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In this issue...

* RGB Study:  No increase in landlords' Costs
* City Planning Public Hearing - Wed., May 6 at 10 am, City Hall
* Choking on Air Rights -- Village Voice, May 5, 1998
* Committee For Environmentally Sound Development - April newsletter

=================================================================

RGB STUDY:  NO INCREASE IN LANDLORDS' COSTS
Price Index of Operating Costs rises 0.1% in 1998

The Price Index of Operating Costs for Rent Stabilized Apartment Houses 
(PIOC) rose just 0.1% in 1998, indicating that the cost of operating and 
maintaining a rent stabilized building was unchanged from the prior year.

The PIOC is one of the most important factors considered by the New York 
City Rent Guidelines Board in setting rent adjustments for stabilized 
apartments.

The PIOC was lower than projected (1.8%) because of a sharp drop in fuel 
oil prices (-15%).

The "core" PIOC, which excludes the erratic changes in fuel oil, natural 
gas, and electricity costs, is useful for analyzing inflationary changes. 
 The "core" rose by 2.3% this year.

The PIOC can be found at:
http://tenant.net/Oversight/RGBsum98/index.html

=================================================================

CITY PLANNING PUBLIC HEARING - Wed., May 6 at 10 am, City Hall

Tenants and Clinton/Hell's Kitchen residents should appear and testify
against Air Rights. Tell Commissioner Joe Rose that Air Rights will destroy
our homes and businesses, and Air Rights should not be unleashed on NYC
neighborhoods.

The hearing starts at 10 am, but the 8th Avenue Zoning Proposal is second
on the agenda. There may be a press conference in front of City Hall prior
to the hearing, but details are not set on that yet.

=================================================================

CHOKING ON AIR RIGHTS
By J.A. Lobbia
Village Voice, May 5, 1998

In New York City, suspicion is the basis of the
landlord-tenant relationship. In Hell's Kitchen and
Clinton, it is its lifeblood. Even before megadeveloper
Harry Macklowe ordered the midnight demolition of four
buildings on West 44th Street in 1985, several landlords
had been convicted in a rash of arsons and general
thuggery; making developers and their plans the subject of
unmitigated skepticism. Small wonder, then, that a zoning
proposal to bolster Times Square theaters by allowing them
to sell air rights is about as popular here as the Capeman
was on Broadway.

The plan, proposed in December by the Department of City
Planning (DCP), is as complicated as it is controversial.
Currently, most Broadway theaters are low-rise buildings
in a high-rise zone and are prohibited from building up
because they are landmarked. They can, however, sell the
rights to the space above them -- "air rights" -- to
developers who want to build towers on adjacent property.

The rezoning would allow developers to buy air rights from
among 25 Broadway theaters, then build anywhere within the
50-block area from 40th to 57th streets between Sixth and
Eighth avenues. Buildings constructed along the west side
of Eighth Avenue could be 20 to 44 per cent bulkier than
currently allowed. Theater owners must run their buildings
as theaters for 25 years and contribute 10 per cent of the
air rights proceeds to a fund for theater preservation.

Clinton and Hell's Kitchen residents say the scheme
encourages luxury high-rises on the border of their
tenement community. They are stunned that DCP decided the
plan merited no environmental impact statement. Worse,
they say, it jeopardizes their own Special Clinton
District, established in 1974 to protect the
neighborhood's stock of affordable housing.

"Nobody disputes that Broadway is important to the
economy" says John Fisher, a member of a coalition
opposing the DCP plan.

"The question is, does it need a bailout, and if so, why
is it all on one neighborhood? This isn't about the
theater; it's about real estate."

On May 6, DCP will hold a public hearing on the proposal.
By May 22, it will vote on a version before sending it to
the City Council. So far, two community boards and the
Manhattan Borough Board have rejected the plan.

Planning director Joe Rose defends the proposal as
balanced and long overdue. "This question has been on the
city's agenda for about 15 years," says Rose. "What we do
about the future of the Broadway theater and the impact of
these theaters in context of the central business district
of the most important urban economy in the world is
something that must be dealt with."

Rose reasons that developers will continue snapping up
Eighth Avenue parcels regardless of the plan's fate, "and
we'll lose the opportunity to use that [real estate boom]
as a way to accommodate the theater district. It's a
marginal increase [in building bulk] in exchange for
benefiting the theater industry." Macklowe, for one, is
building a 25-story high-rise at Eighth Avenue at 49th
Street. Across the street, Jack Resnick is putting up a
40-story luxury-rental apartment house.

But criticism is not limited to Times Square neighbors.
Three elite civic groups -- the Municipal Art Society, the
Historic Districts Council, and the Landmarks Conservancy
note that the plan diminishes public review and say that
it wrongly uses zoning to preserve an industry.

And they worry that the Plan's far-flung nexus -- the
geographic link between a building that sells its air
rights and one built with those rights -- will lead to
unpredictable development.

What the proposal lacks in proper planning nexus, it
arguably has in political linkage. Three theater moguls --
the Nederlander family, Gerald Schoenfeld of the Shubert
Organization, and Rocco Landesman of Jujamcyn Theaters --
own 20 of the 25 theaters with air rights to sell, valued
at about $100 million.

All have contributed individually or through their firms
to Mayor Rudy Giuliani's campaigns, but none more than the
Nederlanders, whose illegally excessive contributions were
among many that resulted in fines for the mayor's campaign
last fall. Robert Nederlander is a part owner of the New
York Yankees.

A particular sore spot is the plan's inclusion of the west
side of Eighth Avenue, since it would allow development
150 feet into mid-blocks west of the avenue -- inching
ever more into the Special Clinton District. Landlords
there must prove to city agencies that they are not
harassers before evicting tenants, and special permits are
required for demolition and building alteration.

But the district's protections have been unevenly
enforced, and longtime tenants say they are being
harangued to move. Even new tenants paying four-digit
rents are being offered money to move out so rents can be
raised beyond the limits of regulation.

"We're talking about preserving the theaters, but what
about preserving Clinton?" asks Kevin Finnegan, land use
chair of Community Board 5. Finnegan also criticizes the
plan for failing to distinguish between major Broadway
houses and smaller theaters.

Broadway backers argue that theater costs have soared 400
per cent in the past 30 years, and they cite dreary data:
half of Broadway's seats have been empty over the past
three decades; only one in five shows pays back its
investors. But the numbers are based on an industry-backed
report that has never been made public, giving skeptics
more ammunition.

"We're talking about commercial theater here," says
Fisher. "It's a business for profit. You have investors
who put money in for a variety of reasons. It's a choice;
you take a risk, and sometimes it works great and
sometimes it falls flat."

Rose himself has a financial interest in a building within
the proposed district, at 260 West 52nd Street, according
to records he filed with the city's Conflicts of Interest
Board. Rose, whose family owns one of the city's larger
real estate interests, has owned 1.5 per cent of the
200-plus-unit apartment building on the east side of
Eighth Avenue since 1987. The holding was put into a blind
trust after 1995. He also owns 7.78 per cent of a building
just outside the district, at 320 West 57th Street. It is
also in a blind trust. Rose values that as worth more than
$500,000.

"This plan has no effect on this property in anyway,
shape, or form," Rose told the Voice. "I referred it to
counsel, and there's no conflict or appearance of
conflict."

What Rose considers "the finest piece of planning work I
have ever encountered" feels to some West Siders like an
assault on their neighborhood. With plans for Yankee
Stadium to the south, the Javits Center expanding
northward, and Trump's Riverside South encroaching from
59th Street, the community that is home to more than
45,000 people seems to be a mere tabula rasa to the city
and developers.

=================================================================

COMMITTEE FOR ENVIRONMENTALLY SOUND DEVELOPMENT, INC.
April, 1998

RALLY BY COLISEUM EMPLOYEES

Joining the outcry to open and use ‘The Coliseum’ was Local 829 
of the Exhibition Employees Union on April 9, 1998.  Since the 
beginning of the year, these people have been deprived of their 
jobs and wages.  The Coliseum has remained unused even as the 
exhibitors sought the space for their trade shows.  Business that 
could have brought revenue to the City, income to the MTA, wages 
to these employees, and all kinds of benefits to hotels, 
theaters, restaurants, and museums are thoughtlessly thwarted.  
How long can this continue?  The issues brought in our lawsuit, 
i.e, violation of the Clean Air act and the disregard of the 
Uniform Land Use Review Process, have yet to be addressed.

The very basic proposition made by our Committee is that this 
relatively new structure remain on the Circle and contribute to 
serving the community.  A proposal on page 2 by the Pei Group 
outlines the benefits of continued use.  Weigh this against the 
harm to the residents of this community of a 75 story ( 750 feet 
tall), 2.1 million square feet of area megastructure replacing 10 
Columbus Circle and the Coliseum.  Think of all the congestion, 
traffic, pollution, shadows; the overuse of infrastructure, water 
supply and sewage system that will occur.  To continue the course 
of demolishing the existing structure defies logic and stinks of 
corruption as only  developers and bond holders benefit from over 
development.

FUTURE DEVELOPMENT PLANNED FOR THE WESTSIDE

The previous newsletter detailed the plans for development of 16 
megastructures on:

Riverside South, the 48 story building on top of the 63rd Street 
YMCA, 2 Columbus Circle, and the rezoning of 8th Avenue from 42nd 
to 56th Streets to accommodate 55 to 75 story behemoths.   To 
this we can add the empty lot on Broadway behind the Mayflower 
Hotel and the empty lot on West End Avenue between 64th and 65th 
Streets   A new building is springing up on 9th Avenue and 59th 
Street.  On Times Square Mortimer Zuckerman, our nemesis,  is 
again in an OUTRAGEOUS real estate deal   According to Brendan 
Sexton, President of the Municipal Arts Society, “This is going 
to be the most congested corner in the City.”

Now there are plans to sell the air rights over  P.S. 191 at 
Amsterdam Avenue and 61st Street for another 600 unit building 
next to it.  Maybe law suits are too polite.  Maybe what we need 
are more direct action if we are to preserve any semblance of a 
livable neighborhood

MAYOR’S SOLUTION TO TRAFFIC PROBLEMS

Traffic slow downs are a worsening problem in Manhattan. Cars 
can’t move and fifteen minute bus  rides either crosstown or 
downtown take 45 to 60 minutes. Changing the timing on traffic 
signals or moving pedestrian crossings won’t do it. The only 
solution is fewer cars.  That means the concentration of 
development in the same area has to be stopped.  There are now 
900,000 cars per day entering the business district of Manhattan 
compared to 600,000 twenty years ago.

TRIBUTE TO BRENDAN GILL

(October 4, 1914 - December 17, 1997)
This newsletter has often quoted Brendan Gill.

“The imperative to keep building enormous new structures in an 
already overbuilt and overburdened city is an illusion, and was 
never more a hazardous one than it is now.  If we fail to deal 
successfully with our sewage, if we are wholly at a loss to know 
what to do with our garbage (save to send it around the country 
by train, seeking day after day an isolated spot in which to hide 
it), if we continue to violate our existing standards in respect 
to air and light, how dare we go on adding to the fabric of the 
city?  Why do we not perceive that the only real-estate 
development appropriate to our situation, whether today or in the 
foreseeable future, is the task of renewing the fabric of the 
city as we already possess it, in the anonymous, long sustained, 
intelligently designed, and modestly profitable reconstruction of 
a housing stock (one thinks especially of Harlem and the South 
Bronx) that covers much of the most desirable acreage in the city 
and is already well supplied with public transportation and other 
necessary services-and is also, more from habitual bureaucratic 
inertia than from bureaucratic venality, falling every day into 
greater and more nearly irreparable ruin?...  It (overbuilding) 
is an affliction that we New Yorkers are especially subject to 
and must learn to oppose as if our lives depended upon it.  For 
they do.”

The New Yorker, August 11, 1992, pages 69-75, The Sky Line


>From the proposal by Pei Group (Holdings) Limited, July 10, 1996

WHY THE NEW YORK COLISEUM SHOULD BE 
MAINTAINED AS AN EXHIBITION HALL

A fully operational Coliseum Exhibition Hall will generate yearly 
economic benefits for the city and state, far exceeding the one 
time cash infusion of a sale of the site, as follows:

                                 Average Year     5 Year Total
City Taxes                       $50 Million     $218.3 Million
State Taxes                      $40 Million     $174.7 Million
Jobs                               10,284/yr.         10,284/yr.
Direct Expenditures               $1 Billion     $4.369 Billion
Hotel Room Nights                    745,820          3,249,620

note: These projections have been generally verified by the NY 
Convention and Visitors Bureau and the NYC Economic Development 
Corporation.

......The economic benefits of tourism, the world’s largest 
industry, that the Coliseum’s shows, meetings, and exhibitions 
generate, will increase hotel room occupancy, restaurant 
patronage, jobs, and other benefits.

Lagging badly, New York ranks 8th nationally in exhibit space 
behind Chicago, Cleveland, Orlando, Las Vegas, Atlanta, New 
Orleans, and Louisville.

The Coliseum, a unique asset, would cost $250 million to replace, 
not including the cost of a new site......

All of our local officials and the Borough President agree with 
the members of Local 829.  They have asked the Mayor and Virgil 
Conway, chair of the MTA, to resume operation of this desirable 
exhibition space.

NYC Public Advocate Mark Green joined laid off employees at the 
rally on April 9, 1998.

LAWSUIT UPDATE

Our lawsuit is making its way through Federal Court.  The City 
and the MTA are using every device to delay but the law is on our 
side and we will prevail. It has been a long struggle since 1986. 

The building still stands because of our litigation and our 
dedicated lawyers.  At this time we need more funding.

CLEAN MONEY CLEAN ELECTIONS

...an organization whose objective is to place campaign finance 
reform for New York City on the ballot this November, asked us to 
sponsor a House Party.  We did and it was a big success. Senator 
Paul Wellstone was the main speaker.  If elected officials were 
not so dependent on the contributions of developers, landlords 
and such-like they would be more amenable to the quality of life 
issues as they pertain to the rest of us. Maine and Vermont 
already have similar requirements. 

To get on the ballot Clean Money Clean Elections needs 40,000 
signatures on petitions. 

Call (212) 964-3534 extension 24 for more information.

Committee For Environmentally Sound Development Inc.
P.O. Box 20464
Columbus Circle Station
New York, NY 10023-1492
Phone: (212) 877-4394

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Date: Mon, 11 May 1998 09:16:22 -0400
Subject: Tenants Online 5/11/98

Tenants Online                                           5/11/98
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In this issue...

* URGENT: Call or Fax City Council Speaker Peter Vallone
* Testimony from Housing Conservation Coordinators
* Theater Zoning Plan Attracts Some High-Profile Supporters (NYT)
* Statement by Housing Advocates in Support of Community Gardens
* Explanation of the Garden Issue

=================================================================

URGENT: CITY COUNCIL SPEAKER PETER VALLONE SHOULD NOT MAKE
BACK-ROOM DEAL WITH MAYOR ON EIGHTH AVENUE ZONING ISSUE.

Some days this zoning war seems like a fast train: by the time you 
get to one milestone, you're on top of the next. It doesn't make for
good sleeping. There's the legal process (ULURP and all the hearings) 
and there's the political process - the backroom discussions and deals.

The latter is what is going on now. Yes, we're still in the period
where the City Planning Commission reviews the proposal and they
might not even vote for a few weeks, but the Mayor is starting to
pressure for a "deal."

We've learned Mayor Giuliani is pressuring City Council Speaker
Peter Vallone to come up with something that he (not necessarily us)
can live with. In times past, Vallone might make a proposal a
"speaker issue" where he tells city council members how to vote,
under various threats. It's unknown if he will do it this time as 
he's running for governor and what he does could impact the race.

But the Mayor wants the deal -- this week. That's bad, especially if the
"deal" is along the lines of the proposal by the "I Love Developers"
Virginia Fields or the Times Square BID, both of which are still 
advocating something very close to the original devastation.

Clinton needs to pressure Vallone to not make a deal that's
even close to the original proposal. So get out of bed, go to
your phones or fax machines and get after Vallone. Don't dwell 
on the precedent issue. That's still an issue, but city council 
doesn't seem too concerned about that.

Vallone is running for governor. He's running on saving the middle-class.
Tell them you want him to show real leadership (not like the Virginia 
Fields type of baloney leadership) to save this neighborhood and other NYC
neighborhoods. Tell them this type of zoning will devastate neighborhoods,
the same neighborhoods that comprise the low and middle-income residents
of this city. It will destroy middle-income housing of they type we have 
in Clinton. And tell him your vote depends on what he does.

Call the following numbers or fax a letter. Time is short so phone calls
and faxes will be better than regular mailing. Call all the numbers and
also call Walter McCaffrey's and June Eisland's offices. They chair the
City Council committees that will review this proposal. In each case,
send a clear message that this zoning proposal is unacceptable and the
proffered "compromises" are also just as onerous.

See if you can speak with the aide that deals with legislative or land 
use issues. In Vallone's office it would be either Gail Benjamin or 
Chris Collins, but McCaffrey and Eisland might have different people.

-----------------------------------------------
Hon. Peter F. Vallone
Speaker, NY City Council
22-45 31st St.
Astoria, NY 11105
District Office  (718) 274-4500  fax (718) 726-0357
City Hall Office (212) 788-7210  fax (212) 788-7207 

Kevin McCabe, Chief of Staff
Bruce Bender, Deputy Chief of Staff
Gary Altman, Legislative Director
Land Use: Gail Benjamin or Chris Collins
-----------------------------------------------
Hon. Walter L. McCaffrey
Chair, Zoning Subcommittee
NY City Council
62-07 Woodside Ave.
Woodside, NY 11377
District Office  (718) 639-1400  fax (718) 899-1294
City Hall Office (212) 788-6957  fax 
-----------------------------------------------
Hon. June M. Eisland
Chair, Land Use Committee
NY City Council
3636 Waldo Avenue
Bronx, NY 10463
District Office  (718) 549-0158  fax (718) 549-6983
City Hall Office (212) 788-7084  fax 

=================================================================

Housing Conservation Coordinators
777 Tenth Avenue
New York, NY 10019

Testimony Before the New York City Planning Commission on the 8th
Avenue Rezoning Issue

My name is Bob Kalin and I have worked as a tenant organizer in
the Clinton Hell1s Kitchen neighborhood for the last nineteen
years and I have been a resident of the Clinton community for the
last eighteen years. I would like to focus in on one point that
Joe Rose has brought up again and again throughout this process.

In every public statement that Joe Rose has made about this plan
he has told all of us repeatedly that should this plan go into
effect that it will not adversely effect the Clinton Special
District and that rigorous enforcement of the provisions of the
Special District would remain in full force and affect if and
when the plan goes through.

I would like to draw everyone's attention to an extraordinary
situation that is currently going on the corner of 48th Street
and 8th Avenue right in the heart of this proposed plan right on
one of the proposed development sites. There is a vacant SRO
hotel located at 300 W. 48th Street. This building is
currently undergoing an illegal renovation where the owners have
illegally added additional floors to the building without the
necessary alteration permits and without a Certificate of No
Harassment as is required under the Clinton Special District.

Incredibly one of the owners of this building Martin Domansky has
lied to the Buildings Department and said that the reason that
the owners added another floor to this building was because they
needed additional space for the mechanical and ventilation
systems for a restaurant that they plan to open on the ground
floor of the building. Even more incredibly Mr. Domansky later
came to the Clinton Land Use Committee of Community Board No. 4
to plead for his alteration permit and under the skillful and
persistent questioning of members of that committee Mr. Domansky
finally told the truth and admitted that the owners actually had
actually added another floor to the building for residential
purposes and that this illegal addition had nothing to do with
their bogus claim of needing this space for a restaurant
mechanical and ventilation system. 

The Executive Committee of CB#4 has written letters to HPD and
the Buildings Dept. and they, and the elected officials, and I
have had numerous conversations with both HPD and the Buildings
Dept. requesting that a new stop work order be immediately issued
for this building and that all Buildings Dept. permits for this
building immediately be revoked and that the owners be ordered to
remove the illegal floor that they have built. As of this morning
work continues at this building. I am told that this matter was
bought to Joe Rose's attention at an Actor's Equity meeting that
he intended to discuss the plan and that he promised to look into
this matter and to make sure that any necessary action be taken
by the appropriate City agencies to make sure that any illegal
work would immediately be stopped and that any violations of the
Clinton Special District would be forcefully and expeditiously
prosecuted. Again as of today the permits remain in effect for
this building and no effort has been made to order the owners to
take down the illegal floor that they have added to the building.

If only the problem were limited to this single building. Last
week at 441-443 W. 50 within the Clinton Special the owner of
that building Carter Sackman tried to illegally add a floor to
the buildings without a Certificate of No Harassment and without
an alteration permit. Fortunately a stop work was finally issued
and work has stopped although I am afraid that this will not be
the last attempt by this owner to illegally add floors to this
building. I could give you a dozen examples in our neighborhood
of where once developers who own property without the Clinton
district get wind of the fact that someone is getting away with
murdering the Clinton Special District that there is nothing that
these developers won't shamelessly try to get away with when
blatantly violating the Clinton Special District. 

Owner James Kinsey illegally adds bump-ups which are illegal
penthouse extensions on the top floors of buildings and suddenly
bump-ups are cropping up all over the Clinton neighborhood.
Owners Abe and Arthur Haruvi build illegal dangerous basement
apartments in more than ten buildings they own in the Clinton
neighborhood and suddenly illegal basement apartments are
cropping up all of the place many of which are serious fire
traps. Owners like James Kinsey and Carter Sackman illegally
combined separate apartments into duplex units and I could give a
half dozen addresses where other owners are trying to do the same
thing. 

You had better believe the eyes of the development community in
Clinton are focused right now on 8th Avenue the highest pressure
point for development in the Clinton community and you had better
believe that they can't believe their good fortune that one of
their own is getting away with murdering the district on the
corner of 8th Avenue and 48th Street and no one is doing anything
about it.

In closing there is one question that I would respectfully like
to ask the members of this commission and particularly Mr. Rose.

Mr. Rose, respectfully, how are we supposed to believe you when
you tell us that if this plan goes into effect that the Clinton
District and its enforcement provisions will remain in full force
and effect when right now--today--we can witness with our own
eyes right in the heart of your proposed plan right on one of the
proposed development sites the most flagrant and egregious
violation of the provisions of the Special District in the entire
history of the Clinton Special District that everyone including
Mr. Rose knows about and no one is doing anything about.

Thank you very much for your time and attention.
Bob Kalin

==================================================================

Theater Zoning Plan Attracts Some High-Profile Supporters
New York Times, May 7, 1998
By DAVID W. DUNLAP

NEW YORK -- It is not at every hearing of the New York City Planning
Commission that the chairman intones: "The next speaker is Stephen Sondheim."

But because Wednesday's hearing concerned a proposal by Mayor Rudolph
Giuliani that is meant to bolster the Broadway theater industry, many
leading lights -- owners, producers, directors, union members and a
legendary composer for good measure -- were drawn to City Hall to endorse
the plan.

Under the proposal, theater owners could sell their unused development
rights, also known as "air rights," to building sites almost anywhere from
Eighth Avenue to the Avenue of the Americas, from 40th to 57th Streets.
Some of the proceeds from the sales would be used to maintain theaters and
subsidize the development of new plays.

"The zoning proposal is vital to the health of serious theater," Sondheim
said, in words echoed by leaders of the Actors' Equity Association, the
International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees, the Alliance of
Resident Theaters, the Theater Development Fund and the League of American
Theaters and Producers, among others.

After the six-and-a-half-hour hearing, Joseph Rose, the chairman of the
Planning Commission, said, "The broad range of support from people who have
historically been at odds is such a positive development for the future of
the theater."

But that show of support also put industry leaders at odds with the local
community boards and numerous elected officials, civic groups and residents
of the Clinton neighborhood, west of the theater district. Opponents fear
that a more liberal use of air rights in midtown would set a citywide
precedent and drive lower-income tenants from the Clinton area by
encouraging more luxury development.

Even some supporters of the measure, like Borough President C. Virginia
Fields of Manhattan, called for eliminating the west side of Eighth Avenue
from the area to which the theaters' air rights could be transferred.

Rose said the proposal would probably be refined before it is voted on next
month by the commission. It will then go to the City Council.

The proposal would open a much larger area of midtown to the use of air
rights from 25 theaters.

Air rights represent unused development potential -- the difference between
the actual size of a building and the maximum size that zoning rules would
allow on the lot.

Because theaters are small, they tend to have large amounts of air rights.
But they are restricted in transferring this development potential to sites
that are immediately adjacent or across the street.

Under the proposal, air rights could "float" to almost anywhere within a
60-block area. Buildings on the "receiving sites" could be made 20 percent
to 44 percent larger, without public review.

In theory, that would open new markets for theater owners, who might
receive about $50 a square foot for the air rights.

But theater owners using this more liberal procedure would have to maintain
their buildings as playhouses for at least 25 years and make a payment of
$10 a square foot into a fund to insure that maintenance obligations on
their buildings are met.

The fund would also be used to subsidize new plays and attract new
audiences. It is expected that the Broadway Initiative, a coalition of
owners, producers and unions, would administer the fund, under government
oversight.

Both the fund and the maintenance obligation were praised by industry
leaders as a way to bolster theaters where dramatic plays and small
musicals can have a home. "They are an endangered species," said Jed
Bernstein, executive director of the League of American Theaters and
Producers.

=================================================================

STATEMENT BY HOUSING ADVOCATES IN SUPPORT OF COMMUNITY GARDENS
May 7, 1998

endorsed by: 
Lower East Side Collective, Metropolitan Council on Housing, Harlem Tenants 
Council, Queens League of United Tenants, People's Firehouse Housing & 
Community Development, Riverside and Edgecombe Neighborhood Association, 
East Side Tenants Coalition, Chelsea Coalition on Housing, TenantNet

Gardens aren't standing in the way of affordable housing.  Giuliani is.

The claim that gardens must be destroyed to make way for affordable
housing is a cruel lie.  As housing advocates, we fully support the
preservation of community gardens.  They are an integral part of the
character and culture of our neighborhoods.

There is no shortage of land on which the City could build desperately
needed housing -- there are 14,000 vacant lots in the City's
inventory, plus hundreds of vacant buildings that could be renovated.

Instead of creating low-income housing on these sites, the City has
been in a fevered rush to sell off City land -- to Mayor Giuliani's
campaign contributors.  The small amounts of subsidized housing that
the City has developed have been condominiums priced out of reach of
low- and middle-income families.

We reject the Giuliani Administration's attempt to justify bulldozing
gardens by appealing to the City's affordable housing crisis. The
Administration is doing nothing to address this crisis and has in fact
exacerbated it, by transferring City-owned buildings to speculators;
failing to enforce housing codes; drastically cutting enforcement
attorneys and code inspectors; imposing unjustifiably high rent
increases; supporting the real-estate industry's campaign to weaken
rent and eviction protections; and privatizing public housing.

=================================================================

Explanation of the Garden Issue (from Lower East Side Collective)

Virtually every community garden in the five boroughs of New York -- 741 in
total -- is in grave danger. On April 24, Mayor Giuliani moved to transfer
them all to the City's Department of Housing Preservation and Development,
with the mandate that HPD sell them off to developers. The City says it has
no choice, because space is limited and the need for affordable housing is
acute. But in fact the City has more than 14,000 vacant lots in its
inventory, and no plans to create low-income housing on any of it -- the
only "affordable housing" program it has creates small numbers of
condominiums for middle-income families.

HPD is in the business not of building housing but of selling off City
land -- to the real-estate developers who bankrolled Giuliani's reelection
campaign. Donald Capoccia,  whose zeal for Giuliani's candidacy was such
that he exceeded campaign finance limits several times over, was the most
recent developer to get his reward: He bulldozed four beloved Lower East
Side community gardens last December 30, including the legendary Chico
Mendez Mural Garden.

It has been rumored that Mayor Giuliani made this move in irritation over
the disruption of an April real-estate auction by garden protesters who
posed as bidders. (I can't imagine who would have done something so rude.)
But the timing of Giuliani's move against the gardens is more importantly a
response to the growing political momentum in favor of garden preservation.
This edict would effectively halt a process that was underway for
transferring large numbers of gardens to the City Parks Department.

Here's the bureaucrats' version of what's happening [with translations in
brackets]:

STATEMENT FROM THE NEW YORK CITY DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING PRESERVATION AND
DEVELOPMENT REGARDING THE GREENTHUMB GARDENS

In an effort to better coordinate the City's use of vacant properties [by
which the City means gardens], Greenthumb Gardens will now operate as part
of HPD's blueprint for sustainable and vibrant neighborhoods. Mayor Giuliani
recognizes the need for balanced neighborhoods which include both open space
and affordable housing. Greenthumb Gardens are a creative but TEMPORARY use
of vacant property. Greenthumb Gardens, when converted are used to build
low- to moderate-income housing. At the same time, HPD is committed to the
belief that affordable housing is a very tangible sign of hope for many of
this City's low-, moderate-, and middle-income families. We must ackowledge
that the construction of affordable housing is an integral part of the
process.

HPD has no intention of changing the premise from which Greenthumb Gardens
operate [that premise being that they will be sold off to developers]. These
gardens will remain, as always, an appropriate yet TEMPORARY use of
City-owned vacant property. Current leases remain in effect. The result of
this transfer will be a higher level of coordination between HPD and the
Gardens leading to a more effective communication regarding the permanent
uses of these sites [e.g., the Parks Department won't get in the way of the
swift auctioning off of the land].

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Date: Tue, 12 May 1998 09:09:17 -0400
Subject: HOUSING CODE ENFORCEMENT


We received the following from Met Council:

DEMAND STEPPED UP HOUSING CODE ENFORCEMENT

Public Hearings:
May 14, 1998
9:00 a.m.-12:30  p.m.
City Hall

"Bricks Fall From Building", (NY Times, May 10, 1998, page 35).

Every day, the newspapers and television inform us that apartments and
other buildings are falling apart. Not coincidentally, the city has allowed
3,000,000 housing violations to accumulate with no plan to act on them. The
litigation bureau of the city's Department of Housing Preservation and
Development (HPD) is functioning at 50% of capacity, and the number of
housing code inspectors proposed in the Mayor's Management budget is less
than 1/3 of the number in place before the city's fiscal crisis caused
wholesale cutbacks. Last December 16, the City Council leadership withdrew
a bill which would have allowed landlords to remove recorded violations
simply by saying that the work was done, with no inspection by the city to
confirm it. Citing the recent rash of building collapses, Mayor Giuliani
opposed the bill.

Tenants and supporters of affordable housing will attend the City Council
housing and buildings committee hearing on May 14 starting 9 a.m. and will
hold a press conference at 12:30 on the steps of City Hall, demanding the
hiring of 200 additional code inspectors and restoring the enforcement
litigation bureau to its full strength.

"In this year of huge surpluses, there can be no wiser investment in
affordable housing than code enforcement," declared Jenny Laurie, executive
director of the Metropolitan Council on Housing.  "The fines collected from
recalcitrant owners would generate revenues for the city, just as parking
tickets do. More importantly, if there was a code enforcement system with
teeth in it most landlords would voluntarily correct violations because it
would be more expensive not to."

Endorsers: (In formation)
Met Council on Housing
Queens League of United Tenants
The Legal Aid Society
The City-Wide Task Force on Housing Court
NYPIRG.
 
FOR MORE INFORMATION:
METROPOLITAN COUNCIL ON HOUSING
Deborah Schutt	  (212) 693-0553
Kenny Schaeffer  (212) 663-3293 x 133

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  TenantNet:              http://tenant.net
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  email:                  
  NYtenants Discussion List: email to  and in 
  the body of the message put "subscribe nytenants".
Information from TenantNet is from experienced non-attorney tenant 
activists and is not considered legal advice.




Date: Mon, 25 May 1998 11:46:30 -0400
Subject: Tenants Online 5/25/98


Tenants Online                                           5/25/98
-----------------------------------------------------------------

In this issue...

* Gardens & Housing, NY Times Letters to the Editor
* Reiter blasts the `anti's'... (Spiro Agnew redux)
* Sondheim Flip-Flops (NY Observer)
* Rent Guidelines Machinations
* RGB Notice of Public Hearing: Apartments
* RGB Notice of Public Hearing: Hotels

=================================================================

New York Times Letters to the Editor
Gardens and Housing

To the Editor:

The controversy over community gardens in New York City has been 
cleverly framed by Mayor Rudolph W. Giuliani's administration as a 
choice between affordable housing and the gardens (news article, May 18). 
In fact, we can have both.

The city spends less than one-half of 1 percent of its budget on parks, 
placing last in a list of every major American city. The city expects 
its wealthier residents to provide the rest of its needs through donations. 
That helps a few major parks.

Community gardens offer cost-free local green space, usually where there 
is no park at all within reach of the young and the elderly. For those 
who care for and enjoy them, the gardens foster pride and accomplishment, 
which is further manifested in the way neighborhoods that have community 
gardens think of and care for themselves.

ANTHONY R. SMITH Pres., 
Horticultural Society of N.Y.
May 19, 1998


To the Editor:

William Frey of the Enterprise Foundation, which builds homes for lower- 
and middle-income families, claims to believe that "to pit housing 
against gardens is too bad, but it's really where we're at" (news 
article, May 18). Lee Stuart of South Bronx Churches, which will build 
homes on the Crimmins Group Association Garden site, believes "there 
is literally no place where people can move; it's tight, tight, tight."

How can people not see what's there? There are thousands of vacant 
lots in the city ripe for building.

I travel by public transportation to the Bronx each week. I see hundreds 
of vacant lots there and in Harlem -- rubble-strewn and rat- and 
drug-infested. We could build whole towns on them!

CYNTHIA N. WORLEY 
New York, May 18, 1998

=================================================================

Reiter blasts the `anti's'...
Crains Insider, May 22, 1998

Fran Reiter, president of New York Convention and Visitor's Bureau, 
last week blasted opponents of Mayor Giuliani's Times Square air 
rights plan who say it could allow landmarked buildings across the 
city to sell their air rights to developers. "To suggest that you're 
not going to do something good because maybe, some time in the future,
someone will do something bad based on what you did that was good, 
is the looniest thing of all," the former deputy mayor said in a speech 
at New York University . "We've made enormous progress in this city over 
the last few years by looking at those types of arguments and dismissing 
them." She said while critics of development sometimes have legitimate 
concerns, too often projects are held up by what she called "the wacko
community" in the city. "You have to reject people who are against things 
just to be against things," she said.

=================================================================

Sondheim Flip-Flops
NY Observer, May 18, 1998 by Shayna Samuels

Stephen Sondheim sure is selfish when it comes to taking a stand in municipal 
politics. In December 1993, Mr. Sondheim spoke out against the expansion of 
the Box Tree restaurant and a residential building in Turtle Bay. "We are 
terribly worried that this major restaurant expansion will inundate us
with increased noise, odors, garbage, rodents, mechanical exhaust and 
crowds of people," Mr. Sondheim wrote at the time.

Cut to 1998. Mr. Sondheim had no problem telling the City Planning 
Commission that he supports the zoning proposal to expand buildings 
in the theater district. The plan would allow theater owners to sell 
their "air rights"; as a result, midtown buildings could increase in 
size by 20 to 44 percent "The zoning proposal is vital to the health of 
serious theater," Mr. Sondheim told the board.

"He's a very caring, responsible citizen, and he probably was just 
focusing on the benefits to the theater industry and not the burdens on 
the larger population," said Lola Finkelstein, chairman of midtown's 
Community Board 5.

So come on, Mr. Sondheim. You're the tops. We sing you in the shower. 
But don't help the tycoons make New York harsher than it is. 
It's enough to make a gal scream.

=================================================================

Rent-Guidelines Machinations 
Research Finds Landlords’ Costs Way Down, 
But New Vacancy-Increase Schemes Rumored 
Giuliani Names Anti-Tenant Activist to Board 
May 1998, Met Council Tenant/Inquilino, by William Rowen 

With the city Rent Guidelines Board scheduled to vote May 7 on
preliminary rent guidelines [see below] for 1998-99, the stage is 
being set for the annual battle over how much more tenants in the 
city's one million rent-stabilized apartments, hotel rooms, and 
lofts will have to pay.

Mayor Giuliani has filled three of the four empty seats on the
nine-member board, two of the three vacant "public" seats and the vacant
landlord seat. And despite three reports indicating that landlords'
costs are down and profits up, board chair Edward S. Hochman has hinted
that the RGB may allow vacancy increases above and beyond the 20 percent
imposed by the Pataki-Bruno-Silver triad last year.

The final guidelines, which will be set on June 22, will go into effect
Oct. 1, and cover all leases from then through Sept. 30, 1999.

Giuliani filled the landlord seat vacated by Joseph Forstadt with
cable-TV show host Vincent Castellano. Castellano, who for a number of
years has produced the virulently anti-tenant "Real Estate Nightmares,"
is known for his Reaganesque anecdotes about troublesome tenants and
oppressed owners. He has also written articles for Real Estate News, the
Queens Tribune, and the Small Property Owners of New York.

The new public members are Bartholomew Carmody, a certified public
accountant in private practice and a native New Yorker living in Peter
Cooper Village, and Edward A. Weinstein, also a CPA, who is a partner
with the national accounting firm of Deloitte & Touche LLP. Weinstein
also lives in Manhattan. The Mayor is reportedly considering Queens
title-insurance attorney John Umland, who is awaiting clearance in a
background check, for the remaining public seat.

Even if Umland is not appointed, Giuliani has significantly altered the
composition of the board, which two years ago had three women and two
African-Americans. The current eight members are all men, six white and
two Latino. Umland is white.

The board did not actually meet until April 28, canceling two scheduled
sessions at the last moment because Hochman could not attend. On April
7, the board members and public assembled, but Hochman never showed up
or notified anyone he did not intend to come. Later, a source said that
he had written down the wrong date in his datebook.

After the April 28 meeting, tenant advocates said that Carmody and
Weinstein asked insightful questions of staff and a panel of tenant
attorneys who gave a presentation on the Rent Regulation Reform Act of
1997.

Interest Rates Down

The RGB received three reports from staff researchers: the 1998 Mortgage
Survey, the 1998 Income and Expense Study, and the 1998 Price Index of
Operation Costs. The results of all three show that landlords' costs are
down and profits up.

Note: These reports are available in acrobat format on TenantNet at:
http://tenant.net/Oversight/RGBsum98/index.html

The Mortgage Survey showed that mortgage interest rates, at 8.6 percent,
are the lowest in 16 years, falling from 10.1 percent in 1995, and
mortgage terms and availability continue the trend of recent years in
favor of the landlord borrowers. Lenders reported that 25 to 100 percent
of their outstanding loans have been refinanced at lower rates. This
survey also found that landlords' average monthly operating costs were
only $301 per apartment, a mere 47 percent of the average monthly rent
of $645, according to the Census Bureau's 1996 Housing and Vacancy
Survey.

The 1998 Income and Expense Study, based on two-year old city Department
of Finance data collected from landlords, showed that landlords' costs
increased slightly more than their income, but still resulted in an
increase in net operating income in stabilized buildings of 2.3 percent.
However, this report stressed that its figures should not be interpreted
to mean that landlords did poorly, noting that its data came from
1995-96, a year marked by an unusually cold winter and a spike in fuel
costs.

Cost Increases Hit 30-Year Low

The 1998 Price Index of Operation Costs (PIOC), the most important index
used in setting the rent guidelines, came in at 0.1 percent--the lowest
increase in the 29-year history of the system. Fuel and taxes are the
two main components of the index; fuel prices and consumption dropped 15
percent, owing to the mild 1997-98 winter, and taxes increased by a very
small 1.2 percent. Insurance prices also declined.

Calculating the "commensurate rent increase" needed to compensate
landlords for increased operating costs over the last year, the report
said there should be no increase for one-year lease renewals and 1.1
percent for two-year renewals.

The board also uses two other ways to interpret the index. One, called
"net revenue," adjusts the guidelines to balance that two-thirds of
tenants renew their leases for two years--and concluded that no increase
was warranted.

The other, Consumer Price Index Adjusted Net Operating Income (or "CPI
Adjusted NOI"), factors in the effects of inflation on landlords' costs.
Using that formula, the guidelines would be 0.5 and 1.5 percent for one-
and two-year lease renewals, respectively.

Vacancy Increases: Son of Scam?

The RGB in the past 15 years has invariably allowed rent increases
higher than could be justified by the price index. To justify this, the
board has cited "qualitative" factors, some of which had some basis in
reality, and at other times expressed its intent to phase out rent
protections as its justification. The latter is a live factor in this
year's deliberations, given that Mayor Giuliani--who has tightly
controlled the RGB's decisions in the last three years--doesn't have to
face city voters again, and has received significant contributions from
the landlord lobby as he ponders running for higher office.

Last year, when the state set the surcharge on vacant apartments at 20
percent for two-year leases, the RGB, after consulting with city
lawyers, decided to not set an additional vacancy allowance. This year,
this issue has resurfaced with a vengeance. Chairman Ed Hochman has said
publicly that the board has the authority to allow higher vacancy
increases.

One possibility is that the city could follow the suburban boards which
have adopted limited vacancy decontrol, allowing landlords to raise
rents to match the most expensive comparable apartment in the building.
The RGB approved a similar scheme in its 1995 preliminary guidelines,
but a storm of tenant protests forced them to drop it.

The board has not yet released its Tenant Affordability Study, but many
of the figures are already known and show that the affordability of
rental housing in New York City is continuing to decline. One key
statistic is the median rent-to-income ratio, measuring the percentage
of tenants' income that goes to rent. In 1996, half of rent-stabilized
tenants paid over 32 percent of their income in rent. The federal
government considers more than 30 percent to be unaffordable.

Note: The Tenant Affordability Study is now available 
in acrobat format on TenantNet at:
http://tenant.net/Oversight/RGBsum98/index.html

A recently released study by the federal Department of Housing and Urban
Development, reported in the Daily News on April 29, stated that "New
York City has the most serious affordable-housing shortage in the
country," and that the "city has a very high number of low-income
renters paying extremely high rents."

No One Is Safe From Son of Scam

Former RGB director Tim Collins, now a tenant lawyer in private
practice, said that all the landlord and tenant data indicate that "it's
never been louder or clearer that this is the time for no rent increase
in New York City." He explained that with the windfall that landlords
are getting, they are not investing in their properties and improving
them, except when they can pass renovation costs on to tenants with
permanent rent increases.

"The only thing straining landlords is the weight of the cash they carry
to their banks," he quipped. "While tenants continue to lose ground,
landlords are getting record-high net operating income."

The end of the great 1997 rent-regulation battle may have lulled tenants
into thinking that they are safe for now. But one lesson of 1997 is that
landlords and the politicians they buy access to will undo tenants'
rights in any way they can. The Rent Guidelines Board bears careful
watching.

The Rent Guidelines Board meetings will hold its required hearings on
June 16 and 18, and the final meeting to set the permanent guidelines on
June 22. (See below.)

=====================================================================

Hearings on the proposed **Apartment** guidelines set forth below shall
be held on Tuesday, June 16, 1998, from 3:30 PM to 10:00 PM at the
"Court Room", Brooklyn Borough Hall, 209 Joralemon Street, Brooklyn, NY
11201.

Hearings on the proposed **Hotel** guidelines set forth below shall be
held on Tuesday, June 16, 1998, from 1:00 PM to 3:00 PM at the "Court
Room", Brooklyn Borough Hall, 209 Joralemon Street, Brooklyn, NY 11201.


NEW YORK CITY RENT GUIDELINES BOARD 
NOTICE OF OPPORTUNITY TO COMMENT 
PROPOSED APARTMENT ORDER #30

Notice of Opportunity to Comment on Proposed Rent Guidelines Governing
Rent Levels in the following accommodations subject to the Rent
Stabilization Law of 1969, as amended: Apartments and Lofts.

NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN PURSUANT TO THE AUTHORITY VESTED IN THE NEW YORK
CITY RENT GUIDELINES BOARD BY THE RENT STABILIZATION LAW OF 1969, as
amended, and the Emergency Tenant Protection Act of 1974, as amended,
implemented by Resolution No 276 of 1974 of the New York City Council
and extended by Chapter 253 of the laws of 1993, and in accordance with
the requirements of Section 1043 of the New York City Charter, that the
Rent Guidelines Board hereby adopts the following levels of fair rent
increases over lawful rents charged and paid on September 30, 1998.
These rent adjustments will apply to rent stabilized apartments with
leases commencing on or after October 1, 1998 and through September 30,
1999. Rent guidelines for loft units subject to Section 286 subdivision
7 of the Multiple Dwelling Law are also included in this order.

PUBLIC HEARINGS

Pursuant to Section 1043 of the City Charter and the hearing
requirements of the Rent Stabilization Law of 1969, as amended, (Section
26-510(h) N.Y.C. Administrative Code) hearings on the proposed
guidelines set forth below shall be held on Tuesday, June 16, 1998, from
3:30 PM to 10:00 PM at the "Court Room", Brooklyn Borough Hall, 209
Joralemon Street, Brooklyn, NY 11201.

Registration of speakers is required. Pre-registration of speakers is
now being accepted and is advised. Those who wish to pre-register may
call 212-385-2934 until 1:00 PM on the business day prior to the
hearing. An exact time for speaking cannot be provided, but those
pre-registering will be informed of their number on the list of
pre-registered speakers when they call the above listed phone number.
Written requests for pre-registration must be received at the office of
the Board at 51 Chambers Street, Room 202, New York, N.Y. 10007, before
1:00 PM on the business day before the hearing.

Pre-registered speakers will be heard in the order of pre-registration
and before those who have not pre-registered. Those who have not
pre-registered can register at the hearing location until 7:00 PM on the
day of the hearing, Tuesday, June 16, 1998. Public Officials will be
given priority over other speakers. This hearing will conclude when all
registered speakers who are present have been heard.

SCHEDULE FOR WRITTEN SUBMISSION OF INFORMATION AND COMMENTS BY THE PUBLIC

Written comments on the proposed rent guidelines must be received no
later then 9:00 PM on Tuesday, June 16, 1998. Such materials must be
submitted to the offices of the RGB at 51 Chambers Street, Suite 202,
New York, N.Y. 10007, or in the alternative may be submitted directly to
the RGB Staff at the Hearing.

INSPECTION AND ACCESS TO THE MATERIAL

Written material submitted to the RGB may be inspected by members of the
public by appointment between the hours of 10:00 AM and 4:00 PM on
weekdays at the RGB offices. Copies of written materials submitted to
the RGB may be ordered, in writing, at a cost of $.25 per page, plus
postage, which shall be paid in cash. In addition, copies of the
existing guidelines and the RGB's Explanatory Statements from prior
years are also available for inspection and copies may be obtained in
the manner provided above.

PROPOSED RENEWAL ADJUSTMENTS FOR APARTMENTS

Together with such further adjustments as may be authorized by law, the
annual adjustment for renewal leases for apartments shall be:

  -- For a one year renewal lease commencing on or after October 1, 1998
     and on or before September 30, 1999: 2%

  -- For a two year renewal lease commencing on or after October 1, 1998
     and on or before September 30, 1999: 4%

These two adjustments shall also apply to dwelling units in a structure
subject to the partial tax exemption program under Section 421a of the
Real Property Tax Law, or in a structure subject to Section 423 of the
Real Property Tax Law as a Redevelopment Project.

PROPOSED VACANCY ALLOWANCE FOR APARTMENTS

No vacancy allowance is permitted except as provided by sections 19 and
20 of the Rent Regulation Reform Act of 1997.

SUPPLEMENTAL ADJUSTMENT OF UP TO $15 PER MONTH FOR RENEWAL LEASES FOR
APARTMENTS RENTING FOR $400 OR LESS ON SEPTEMBER 30, 1998

For a renewal lease on a dwelling unit with a lawful rent of $400 or
less per month on September 30, 1998 the levels of rent increase for
renewal leases commencing October 1, 1998 through September 30, 1999 are
the same as those set forth hereinabove plus $15 per month.

PROPOSED ADJUSTMENTS FOR LOFTS (UNITS IN THE CATEGORY OF BUILDINGS
COVERED BY ARTICLE 7-C OF THE MULTIPLE DWELLING LAW)

The Rent Guidelines Board proposes the following levels of rent increase
above the "base rent", as defined in Section 286, subdivision 4, of the
Multiple Dwelling Law, for units where residential renewal leases are
offered pursuant to Section 286, subdivision 3:

  -- For one year renewal leases commencing on or after October 1, 1998 and
on or 
     before September 30, 1999: 1.5%

  -- For two year renewal leases commencing on or after October 1, 1998 and
on or 
     before September 30, 1999: 3%

LEASES ON VACANT LOFT UNITS

No Vacancy Allowance is permitted under this Order. Therefore, except as
otherwise provided in Section 286, subdivision 6, of the Multiple
Dwelling Law, the rent charged to any tenant for a vacancy lease
commencing on or after October 1, 1998 and on or before September 30,
1999 may not exceed the "base rent" referenced above.

FRACTIONAL TERMS

For the purposes of these guidelines any lease or tenancy for a period
up to and including one year shall be deemed a one year lease or
tenancy, and any period over one year and up to and including two years
shall be deemed a two year lease.

ESCALATOR CLAUSES

Where a lease for a dwelling unit in effect on May 31, 1968 or where a
lease in effect on June 30, 1974 for a dwelling unit which became
subject to the Rent Stabilization Law of 1969, by virtue of the
Emergency Tenant Protection Act of 1974 and Resolution Number 276 of the
New York City Council, contained an escalator clause for the increased
costs of operation and such clause is still in effect, the lawful rent
on September 30, 1998 over which the fair rent under this Order is
computed shall include the increased rental, if any, due under such
clause except those charges which accrued within one year of the
commencement of the renewal lease. Moreover, where a lease contained an
escalator clause that the owner may validly renew under the Code, unless
the owner elects or has elected in writing to delete such clause,
effective no later than October 1, 1998 from the existing lease and all
subsequent leases for such dwelling unit, the increased rental, if any,
due under such escalator clause shall be offset against the amount of
increase authorized under this Order.

SPECIAL ADJUSTMENTS UNDER PRIOR ORDERS

All rent adjustments lawfully implemented and maintained under previous
apartment orders and included in the base rent in effect on September
30, 1998 shall continue to be included in the base rent for the purpose
of computing subsequent rents adjusted pursuant to this Order.

SPECIAL GUIDELINE

Under Section 26-513(b)(1) of the New York City Administrative Code, and
Section 9(e) of the Emergency Tenant Protection Act of 1974, the Rent
Guidelines Board is obligated to promulgate special guidelines to aid
the State Division of Housing and Community Renewal in its determination
of initial legal regulated rents for housing accommodations previously
subject to the City Rent and Rehabilitation Law which are the subject of
a tenant application for adjustment. The Rent Guidelines Board hereby
adopts the following Special Guidelines:

- For dwelling units subject to the Rent and Rehabilitation Law on
September 30, 1998, which become vacant after September 30, 1998, the
special guideline shall be the greater of 40% above the maximum base
rent as it existed or would have existed, or 50% above the maximum
collectible rent paid by the prior tenant plus the allowable fuel cost
adjustment.

DECONTROLLED UNITS

The permissible increase for decontrolled units as referenced in Order
3a which become decontrolled after September 30, 1998, shall not exceed
the greater of 40% above the maximum base rent as it existed or would
have existed, or 50% above the maximum collectible rent paid by the
prior tenant plus the allowable fuel cost adjustment.

CREDITS

Rentals charged and paid in excess of the levels of rent increase
established by this Order shall be fully credited against the next
month's rent.

STATEMENT OF BASIS AND PURPOSE

The Rent Guidelines Board is authorized to promulgate rent guidelines
governing apartment units subject to the Rent Stabilization Law of 1969,
as amended, and the Emergency Tenant Protection Act of 1974, as amended.
The purpose of these guidelines is to implement the public policy set
forth in Findings and Declaration of Emergency of the Rent Stabilization
Law of 1969 (§26-501 of the N.Y.C. Administrative Code) and in the
Legislative Finding contained in the Emergency Tenant Protection Act of
1974 (L.1974 c. 576, §4 [§2]).

The Rent Guidelines Board is also authorized to promulgate rent
guidelines for loft units subject to Section 286 subdivision 7 of the
Multiple Dwelling Law. The purpose of the loft guidelines is to
implement the public policy set forth in the Legislative Findings of
Article 7-C of the Multiple Dwelling Law (Section 280).]]

Dated: May 12, 1998

Edward S. Hochman, Esq. 
Chairman Rent Guidelines Board

======================================================================

NEW YORK CITY RENT GUIDELINES BOARD 
NOTICE OF OPPORTUNITY TO COMMENT 
PROPOSED HOTEL ORDER # 28

Notice of Opportunity to Comment on Proposed Rent Guidelines Governing
Rent Levels in the following accommodations subject to the Rent
Stabilization Law of 1969: Hotels, Rooming Houses, Single Room Occupancy
Buildings and Lodging Houses.

NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN PURSUANT TO THE AUTHORITY VESTED IN THE NEW YORK
CITY RENT GUIDELINES BOARD BY THE RENT STABILIZATION LAW OF 1969, as
amended, and the Emergency Tenant Protection Act of 1974, as amended,
implemented by Resolution No. 276 of 1974 of the New York City Council
and extended by Chapter 253 of the laws of 1993, and in accordance with
the requirements of Section 1043 of the New York City Charter, that the
Rent Guidelines Board hereby adopts the following levels of fair rent
increases over lawful rents charged and paid on September 30, 1998.

APPLICABILITY

This proposed order shall apply to units in buildings subject to the
Hotel Section of the Rent Stabilization Law (Sections 26-504(c) and
26-506 of the N.Y.C. Administrative Code), as amended, or the Emergency
Tenant Protection Act of 1974 (L.1974, c. 576 §4[§5(a)(7)). With respect
to any tenant who has no lease or rental agreement, the level of rent
increase established herein shall be effective as of one year from the
date of the tenant's commencing occupancy, or as of one year from the
date of the last rent adjustment charged to the tenant, or as of October
1, 1998, whichever is later. This anniversary date will also serve as
the effective date for all subsequent Rent Guidelines Board Hotel
Orders, unless the Board shall specifically provide otherwise in the
Order. Where a lease or rental agreement is in effect, this Order shall
govern the rent increase applicable on or after October 1, 1998 upon
expiration of such lease or rental agreement, but in no event prior to
one year from the commencement date of the expiring lease, unless the
parties have contracted to be bound by the effective date of this Order.

PUBLIC HEARINGS

Pursuant to Section 1043 of the City Charter and the hearing
requirements of the Rent Stabilization Law of 1969, as amended, (Section
26-510(h) N.Y.C. Administrative Code) hearings on the proposed
guidelines set forth below shall be held on Tuesday, June 16, 1998, from
1:00 PM to 3:00 PM at the "Court Room", Brooklyn Borough Hall, 209
Joralemon Street, Brooklyn, NY 11201. Registration of speakers is
required. Pre-registration of speakers is now being accepted and is
advised. Those who wish to pre-register may call 212-385-2934 until 1:00
PM on the business day prior to the hearing. An exact time for speaking
cannot be provided, but those pre-registering will be informed of their
number on the list of pre registered speakers when they call the above
listed phone number. Written requests for pre-registration must be
received at the office of the Board at 51 Chambers Street, Room 202, New
York, N.Y. 10007, before 1:00 PM on the business day before the hearing.

Pre-registered speakers will be heard in the order of pre-registration
and before those who have not pre-registered. Those who have not
pre-registered can register at the hearing location until 2:00 PM on the
day of the hearing, Tuesday, June 16th, 1998. Public Officials will be
given priority over other speakers.

SCHEDULE FOR WRITTEN SUBMISSION OF INFORMATION AND COMMENTS BY THE PUBLIC

Written comments on the proposed rent guidelines must be received no
later than 6:00 PM on Tuesday, June 16th, 1998. Such materials must be
submitted to the offices of the RGB at 51 Chambers Street, Suite 202,
New York, N.Y. 10007, or in the alternative may be submitted directly to
the RGB Staff at the Hearing.

INSPECTION AND ACCESS TO THE MATERIAL

Written material submitted to the RGB may be inspected by members of the
public by appointment between the hours of 10:00 AM and 4:00 PM on
weekdays at the RGB offices. Copies of written materials submitted to
the RGB may be ordered, in writing, at a cost of $.25 per page, plus
postage, which shall be paid in cash. In addition, copies of the
existing guidelines and the RGB's Explanatory Statements from prior
years are also available for inspection and copies may be obtained in
the manner provided above.

PROPOSED RENT GUIDELINES FOR HOTELS, ROOMING HOUSES, SINGLE ROOM
OCCUPANCY BUILDINGS AND LODGING HOUSES

Pursuant to its mandate to promulgate rent adjustments for hotel units
subject to the Rent Stabilization Law of 1969, as amended, (§26-510(e)
of the N.Y.C Administrative Code) the Rent Guidelines Board hereby
adopts the following rent adjustments:

The allowable level of rent adjustment over the lawful rent actually
charged and paid on September 30, 1998 shall be:

1) Residential Class A (apartment) hotels - 0% 
2) Lodging houses - 0% 
3) Rooming houses (Class B buildings containing less than 30 units) - 0% 
4) Class B hotels - 0% 
5) Single Room Occupancy buildings (MDL section 248 SRO's) - 0%

NEW TENANCIES

No "vacancy allowance" is permitted under this order. Therefore, the
rents charged for tenancies commencing on or after October 1, 1998 and
on or before September 30, 1999 may not exceed the levels over rentals
charged on September 30, 1998 permitted under the applicable rent
adjustment provided above.

ADDITIONAL CHARGES

It is expressly understood that the rents collectible under the terms of
this Order are intended to compensate in full for all services provided
without extra charge on the statutory date for the particular hotel
dwelling unit or at the commencement of the tenancy if subsequent
thereto. No additional charges may be made to a tenant for such
services, however such charges may be called or identified.

STATEMENT OF BASIS AND PURPOSE

The Rent Guidelines Board is authorized to promulgate rent guidelines
governing hotel units subject to the Rent Stabilization Law of 1969, as
amended, and the Emergency Tenant Protection Act of 1974, as amended.
The purpose of these guidelines is to implement the public policy set
forth in Findings and Declaration of Emergency of the Rent Stabilization
Law of 1969 (§26-501 of the N.Y.C. Administrative Code) and in the
Legislative Finding contained in the Emergency Tenant Protection Act of
1974 (L.1974 c. 576, §4 [§2]).

Dated: May 12, 1998
Edward S. Hochman, Esq. 
Chairman Rent Guidelines Board

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