Rent Law Reform and the IDC

Dear Fellow Democrats,

The Progressive Caucus is looking forward to seeing you at the New York State Democratic Committee meeting this  Monday, May 18th at 9:00 a.m. in the Chambers Room at the Hilton Hotel  in Albany. Our topics - rent law reform and the IDC.

Rent Laws Reform_Foley Square

New York City: Foley Square March for Rent Reform.  Thursday, May 14, 2015, in New York. (Frank Franklin II, AP / AP)

We will be discussing the two resolutions the Progressive Caucus is putting forward at this meeting, both of which arose from our April 26th meeting. The first is our resolution on Rent Law reform:  Calling upon Governor Cuomo, the Assembly and Senate to pass Reform Rent Regulations and Preserve Affordable Housing, supporting not only the preservation of existing affordable housing in New York City but also of existing tenant protections that ensure that unscrupulous landlords can’t evict tenants without cause, or harass tenants in an attempt to force them to vacate. This is a critical issue for middle-class and working people and affects all of us, and the diversity of the communities in which we live. There is currently a very strong effort by progressive Democratic State Senators and Assemblymembers, tenant activists, senior advocates and other progressives to reform rent regulation in New York, and we want our Caucus to be on record supporting those efforts. Further, we want our New York Democratic Party on record supporting those efforts, because we are the party that supports and strengthen middle-income and working families, and we know that those families can survive and prosper only if they live in decent housing.

We are hoping that the Executive Director of Tenants and Neighbors  [http://www.tandn.org] will be speaking to our Caucus at 9:00 am on May 18th about this is a critically important legislation.  With the recent – and perhaps ongoing – shifts in legislative leadership there is a real chance for rent reform regulation, and we urge everyone to join us to learn more about what we can do to help win passage this session.

Our other resolution is a continuation of our ongoing call to The Members of the NYS Senate’s “Independent Democratic Conference” to Rejoin the Democratic Conference. Issues like real rent reform are the test of the strength of the IDC’s real powers, and its track record to date on securing passage of progressive legislation it professes to support, like the 10-point Women’s Agenda, has been one of dismal failure.  To actually pass progressive legislation the IDC Senators must work with, not against, their fellow Democrats. We again urge the IDC to rejoin to the Senate Democratic Caucus, as each of those Senators ran – and won – as Democrats.

All are welcome to join our meeting and we look forward to seeing you there!