Tuesday, June 23, 2009

E-mail or Fax Gov. Paterson: Put Tenant Bills on Special Session Agenda!

If you have not yet done so, please email Governor David A. Paterson at once to urge that he include tenant bills on the agenda of the SECOND extraordinary session (often referred to as a special session) that the Governor plans to convene TOMORROW, Wednesday, June 24. At the moment none of our bills are on the agenda, although many legislators are pressing the Governor to include them.

The Governor has convened an extraordinary session for today at 3:00 pm, and reportedly plans to call another extraordinary session tomorrow. It very well may be that the only way we can get our bills to the floor of the Senate is on the agenda of a special session, when the agenda is set by the Governor.

The three email addresses below are for Larry Schwartz, secretary to the Governor (in effect, the chief of staff); Peter Kiernan, counsel; and Haley Plourde-Cole, assistant to Larry Schwartz.


If you have trouble getting your emails to go through, you can

  • fax a letter to the Governor at (518) 473-7619, ATTN Larry Schwartz and Peter Kiernan, or
  • phone the Governor at (518) 474-4246.

Use the letter below as a guide, but use your own words if possible.

In the subject line of your email, say something like: Special session must include tenant bills.

DON’T DELAY. No time for snail mail – so use email.


June 21, 2009

Governor David A. Paterson
Executive Chamber
Albany, New York 12224


Dear Governor Paterson:

The downstate region and our building cannot wait until 2010 or later while we lose tens of thousands of additional affordable homes for lack of legislative action. New York City and suburban counties have already lost 200,000 to 300,000 affordable apartments and we cannot afford to lose more.

In my building, tenants are fighting "unique or peculiar" increases sought by our landlords - the same landlords now in court challenging helpful DHCR regulations. We are spending thousands of dollars in legal bills to save our homes.

So I urge that in any extraordinary session that you call, you include the following essential bills on the agenda:

► S2237-A (Stewart-Cousins, et al.)/A2005 (Rosenthal et al.) This bill repeals vacancy decontrol and re-regulates most apartments that have been deregulated due to high rent vacancy decontrol during the last 15 years. (Passed Assembly)

► S3326 (Stewart-Cousins, et al.)/A4359-A (Pretlow et al.) This bill puts into rent stabilization all buildings that will leave or that have already left the Mitchell-Lama or project-based Section 8 program, regardless of when constructed, and closes the “unique or peculiar circumstances” loophole.

► S745-A (Krueger et al/A1928 (O’Donnell et al.) This bill makes rent increases for Major Capital Improvement rent increases temporary surcharges. (Passed Assembly)

Failure to enact these bills this year would make the already severe housing crisis in downstate New York far worse. There are many other important bills, but these three will stop the bleeding.

Please take this necessary step to reverse the phaseout of our rent and eviction protection laws, preserve the remaining affordable rental housing we have, and protect tenants from eviction.


50 West 97th St.

New York, NY 10025

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