June 2023

Weekly Report for June 30, 2023

NYS planning for major wind energy projects to meet climate goals
Last week, state utility regulators began planning for a major new underwater transmission project to bring offshore wind energy into New York City to help meet the state’s climate and clean energy goal of having at least 9 gigawatts of offshore wind energy by 2035. The project is expected to cost billions of dollars and is meant to be in service by Jan. 1, 2033. The ambitious project will be the first of its kind in the nation. At the same time, Gov. Kathy Hochul announced a key milestone at the state’s first offshore wind farm off the coast of Long Island. Read more here.

DOS issues new cease and desist zone in parts of Brooklyn
On Wednesday, the Department of State adopted regulations establishing a new cease and desist zone covering parts of Brooklyn in areas within Community Board 17, including parts of East Flatbush and Farragut/Hyde Park. The zone will take effect on July 1, 2023 and expire on July 1, 2028. NYSAR submitted formal testimony opposing the measure. The regulation prohibits the solicitation of a real estate listing from any homeowner whose name appears on a Department of State issued cease and desist list. Read more here.

NYC Mayor and Council Speaker come to budget agreement
New York City Mayor Eric Adams and City Council Speaker Adrienne Adams have come to an agreement on a $107 billion city budget ahead of the July 1 deadline, a $6 billion increase over last year’s budget. The budget agreement includes new funding to support the city’s Right to Counsel law for low-income tenants facing eviction, child care subsidies for undocumented families, and restores funding for city libraries, as well as other social programs. The capital budget also includes $4 billion for fiscal year 2024’s capital budget for housing. The City Council is expected to vote to adopt the budget on Friday. Read more here.

 Weekly Report for June 23, 2023

State Assembly concludes 2-day special session
This week, the Assembly concluded its two-day special session to end this year’s legislative session. The majority of bills passed during the marathon two-day session were primarily of local concern, such as local tax extension bills. Other bills passed in the final days include a new requirement for LLCs to disclose the identities of beneficial owners, reforming the state’s wrongful conviction process, and authorizing the town of Orangetown (Rockland County) to establish a community preservation fund through a new real estate transfer tax. These bills are pending Governor Hochul’s consideration. Read more here.

NYC Council introduces bill prohibiting landlords from collecting broker fees from tenants
This week, NYC Council Member Chi Osse introduced legislation (Int. 1105) that would prohibit landlords from collecting broker fees from a tenant. The bill stipulates that the collection of a broker fee must be from the party employing such broker. NYSAR strongly opposes this bill as it is a drastic change from the current model in rental transactions in New York City. A similar bill has been introduced in the State Legislature (S.2783/A.4781), which did not advance this legislative session. Read NYSAR’s memo in opposition here.

State lawmakers approve bill to address deed theft
A bill (S.6577/A.6656) to help protect victims of deed theft passed the Senate and Assembly during the final days of this year’s legislative session. The bill also authorizes a stay of foreclosure proceedings when there is an investigation into whether the title to a person’s property was taken through fraud or forgery. The bill will be sent later this year to Governor Hochul for her consideration. Read more here.

NYC Rent Guidelines Board approves 3% rent increase
On Wednesday, the New York City Rent Guidelines Board voted to approve a 3 percent rent increase for one-year leases on rent-stabilized apartments. Two-year leases will see a 2.75 percent increase in year one and 3.2 percent increase in year two. The new rates will apply to leases effective between Oct. 1, 2023 and Sept. 30, 2024. Read more here.

 Weekly Report for June 16, 2023

Effective June 14, 2023 an amended PCDS must be used by all licensees
The amended Property Condition Disclosure Statement (PCDS) to include language disclosing the presence of “indoor mold” went into effect Wednesday, June 14, 2023. NYSAR inquired with the DOS how the amended form may impact current listings taken prior to June 14, 2023. If a contract of sale has already been executed with the signed disclosure, then the seller met his/her obligation. If a listing was taken prior to June 14, 2023 and the PCDS was provided by the seller but it was not signed by the buyer prior to June 14, 2023, the new amended PCDS must be used instead. The seller would need to fill out the amended PCDS under these circumstances. If you have any questions, please contact the NYSAR Legal Hotline at 518-436-9727.

Assembly to return to Albany June 20 – housing legislation unlikely
State Assemblymembers are scheduled to return to Albany on June 20 for a two-day session to complete unfinished work when the legislature ended session on June 10. Many of the bills to be taken up will be local-level concerns, according to reports. Housing is not expected to be addressed. Governor Kathy Hochul, however, said this week that she is considering executive action related to housing. “I have to focus on, yes protect tenants, but number one, I have to build more housing,” stated Hochul. The governor would likely need to declare a related state of emergency and could take action to expedite the process to construct more affordable housing, or direct state funds to expand tax incentives to build or maintain existing units. Read more here.

NYC Mayor considering vetoing new housing assistance bills
New York City Mayor Eric Adams is weighing a decision to veto a package of bills approved by the NYC Council that would expand access to the city’s Family Eviction Prevention Supplement (FHEPS) housing vouchers and eliminate a 90-day waiting period shelter residents must complete before they can gain access to rental subsidies. The mayor’s office argued that introducing more vouchers to the market would produce more competition for few units. Read more here.

Save the Date: NYSAR Lobby Day – April 30, 2024
Mark your calendars – NYSAR’s annual Lobby Day in Albany is scheduled to take place on Tuesday, April 30, 2024. Following this year’s record attendance, next year’s NYSAR Lobby Day has been moved to a larger adjacent venue, the Empire State Plaza Convention Center. More details to come. We look forward to seeing you there next year!

 Weekly Report for June 9, 2023

Save the Date: NYSAR Lobby Day – April 30, 2024
Mark your calendars – NYSAR’s annual Lobby Day in Albany is scheduled to take place on Tuesday, April 30, 2024. Following this year’s record attendance, next year’s NYSAR Lobby Day has been moved to a larger adjacent venue, the Empire State Plaza Convention Center. More details to come. We look forward to seeing you there next year!

State Legislature unable to agree on housing package in final days of session – “Good cause” eviction fails to advance
On June 8, in the final days of this year’s legislative session, Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins and Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie released a joint statement saying the State Legislature and Governor Hochul were unable to come to an agreement on a final housing package that included “good cause” eviction. Governor Hochul’s spokesperson, however, pointed out the Legislature’s own failure to act on any housing bills. NYSAR strongly opposed “good cause” eviction proposals and was heavily engaged in advocacy efforts expressing our concerns and inherent flaws in the bill. Thank you to everyone who made their voices heard on this issue. Read more here.

City of Kingston repeals local “good cause” eviction law
On June 6, the City of Kingston Common Council voted 7-1 to repeal the city’s “good cause” eviction local law, which went into effect in early 2022. The reason for the repeal vote was due to concerns that the city would incur lawsuits resulting from court decisions in other municipalities that struck down similar local “good cause” eviction laws due to conflict with state law. Read more here.

NYC Council Primary races to watch
New York City Primary Elections will be held Tuesday, June 27 for City Council races, district attorneys, judges, and other local races. Redistricting and ranked choice voting is likely to impact several competitive City Council races, including District 9 in Harlem where veteran Assemblymember Inez Dickens is competing with Assemblymember Al Taylor and progressive advocate Yusef Salaam for the open seat. Read more about the upcoming competitive Primary races here.

 Weekly Report for June 2, 2023

Take Action Now — Urge state lawmakers to remove cold call restrictions on licensed real estate professionals during a state of emergency.
With less one weeks left in this year’s legislative session, your action is needed – Please urge your state lawmakers to pass legislation S.412/A.6680, which clarifies the ability for licensed real estate professionals to provide telemarketing services during states of emergency when it is found that such services would not impair or mitigate said state of emergency. This legislation does not in any way impede state efforts to address current states of emergency. To complete the NYSAR Call For Action, click here.

NYSAR meets with key lawmakers as end of session nears
This week, NYSAR staff met with key lawmakers as the 2023 legislative session comes to a close on June 9. Among the priorities include approval of a technical change to the state’s laws restricting telemarketing and increasing disclosure throughout the coop application and purchase process. Additionally, NYSAR is urging state lawmakers not to advance legislation that would impose “good cause” eviction measures, new cease and desist zones in NYC, and a prohibition on landlords from collecting broker fees from tenants. These final days of session are critical moments to educate lawmakers on REALTOR® issues as hundreds of bills are expected to be passed in each house over the next several days. Read more about some of the outstanding issues before the state legislature here.