Saturday, February 6, 2010

US Govt. questioning Gluck's rents at Independence Plaza North

The article below concerns one of the first developments that Gluck bought and took out of the Mitchell-Lama program.  Because Independence Plaza North was built AFTER 1973 (unlike our building), its rents would go to market rate.  However, the strong tenant association there negotiated a "Landlord Assistance Plan" (LAP) so that rents would increase to market rate - but gradually.  And since that building (unlike ours) had a federally-assisted mortgage while under Mitchell-Lama, many lower-income tenants there qualified for Section 8 enhanced vouchers. Under those vouchers, tenants pay a third of their household income in rent and the federal government pays the landlord the rest of the rent.   The question of how high the rent is, therefore, concerns the federal government.


Volume 22, Number 39 | The Newspaper of Lower Manhattan | February 5 - 11, 2010

Downtown Express file photo by Lorenzo Ciniglio
Independence Plaza landlord Laurence Gluck, at a tenants meeting five years ago. His attorney, Stephen Meister, said this week that if tenants win their rent stabilization case “I’m going to make it my personal business to completely take the building to market. Everyone gets screwed if [tenant attorney] Miller wins.”

Feds say Gluck is gouging I.P.N.

By Julie Shapiro

Tenants of Independence Plaza North have been arguing for years that their apartments should be rent-stabilized — and now U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara is taking up the cause.

Bharara’s office wants to recover tens of millions of dollars the federal government paid I.P.N. owner Laurence Gluck to support the Tribeca apartment complex’s low-income tenants. Bharara, in New York’s Southern District, also wants many of I.P.N.’s 1,339 apartments declared rent-stabilized.

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