Prior to the 2019 NYS Legislative package of bills aimed at protecting renters, East Harlem and the South Bronx had already witnessed a significant reduction in its affordable housing stock. Landlords deregulated their units in order to charge market-rate rents, and many renters unfortunately fell prey to illegal tactics aimed at displacing them. This is why Council Member Ayala has committed to doing everything in her power to help preserve as many existing affordable housing units as possible.
To date, the Council Member has done just that through the approval of various Article XI tax exemptions at the following properties:
Putnam Portfolio (The Crossing +The Parker) – 1,619 units
Taino Towers – 656 units
The Lexington Courts – 229 units
Timpson HDFC – 178 units
St. Ann’s Apartments – 90 units
451-455 East 116th Street – 52 units
1045 Anderson Avenue – 49 units
1015 Anderson Avenue – 22 units
An article XI incentive completely or partially exempts property owners from real estate taxes that help them to make necessary upgrades to the property while ensuring that unit rents remain affordable.
The Council Member has also supported the construction of the following affordable housing projects in the district via Capital Finding/ Landuse Approval:
- Betances VI project in the South Bronx, resulting in the construction of 100 new affordable housing units in the South Bronx. Thirty percent of these units will be set-aside for formerly homeless individuals and another thirty percent will be reserved for households earning between thirty and fifty percent of the Average Median Income (AMI).
- Park Haven apartments in the South Bronx, which includes 178 units of affordable housing units for households earning between thirty and eighty percent of the Area Median Income, thirty percent of which will be set aside for individuals who have experienced homelessness.
- Tres Puentes Senior Apartments which houses 119 units of mixed studio and one-bedroom apartments- 53 of which were set aside for households where at least one member has a serious mental illness.
- Mill Brook Terrace, a nine-story development at 570 East 137th Street in the Mott Haven neighborhood in the South Bronx featuring169 units of affordable one-bedroom apartments reserved for one- to two-person households where at least one member is 62 years of age or older. Eligible tenants will pay 30 percent of their income, though applicants must qualify for Section 8 requirements.
- The Betances Residence for older adults- a 152 unit 100% affordable building with a set aside of 47 apartments for formerly homeless individuals, and a 26 unit set aside for individuals on NYCHA’s Section 8 and public housing waiting list. The remaining units are set aside for low-income seniors.
- Supported the creation of El Barrio/East Harlem Community Land Trust – 36 units
- 431 Concord Avenue- a new 11-story, 92 unit affordable housing building in the Mott Haven section of the Bronx.
- 261 Walton Avenue- a new 12 story, 206 Unit Affordable housing project
- Sendero Verde- 360 units of of 100% affordable housing
- One East Harlem- a 19 story development with 300 units of affordable housing
- Bronx Point- 542 affordable housing units
In addition to her work on preserving and supporting the construction of affordable housing, Council Member Ayala has Sponsored/Co-Sponsored the following bills aimed at education, protecting and supporting renters.
Bill 1179- A Local Law in relation to the disapproval of a determination by the department of housing preservation and development to approve the transfer of the property located at 424 East 115 Street, also known as Block 1708, Lot 38, in the borough of Manhattan
Bill 1242- A Local Law to amend the administrative code of the city of New York, in relation to expanding available data in the online property owner registry
Bill 1339 – A Local Law to amend the administrative code of the city of New York, in relation to providing information about lawful source of income discrimination to applicants for the city fighting homelessness and eviction prevention supplement program
Bill 2050 This bill would amend Local Law number 136 of 2017, the housing court right-to-counsel law, by requiring implementation of access to legal services for tenants facing eviction proceedings in housing court citywide by June 1, 2021.
Bill 0146 The bill would require that any individuals or families receiving rental assistance vouchers established by the Department of Social Services, such as the current LINC, CityFEPS and SEPS vouchers, would continue to receive the assistance so long as the household continues to meet any other eligibility requirements. The bill would also require that the maximum rent toward which rental assistance vouchers may be applied annually increases at the same rate as levels equal to those established pursuant to section 982.503 of the Code of Federal Regulations, otherwise referred to as “Section 8.” The requirements set by the bill would be subject to appropriation.
See below for a few articles highlighting some of these projects: