VIEW FROM THE NEW YORK GULAG
I am no defender of Landlords. Still, their aversion to Section 8 tenants (NYT Subsidized Tenants..9/20/08) may not be “income exclusion” but insider knowledge of the tactics and abuses of Section 8 tenants by DHCR.
DHCR repeatedly “loses” documents, harassing tenants for repeats. They demand intrusive “legal hearings” – one tenant was asked “why do you want to stay in your apartment…,” ie, why have we failed to move you out despite best efforts. They are doing their utmost to drop tenants from the Section 8 program, giving credence to the statement “Money is missing from DHCR. I’m here to look for it,” by an aide to a NY State Senator.
That aide to a State Senator no longer works for him. Elected representatives go along with this, making promises to tenants that they have no intention of keeping; promising lawyers, representation, etc.
The Mitchell Lama buyout on Roosevelt Island was a travesty. DHCR tripled Fair Market rents, removed tenant protections and allowed landlords to write new leases, dated a year back, denying seniors and disabled tenants SCRIE and DRIE protection. I’m tired of seeing my neighbours crying in the streets and hallways. Some are on medications, others talk about near nervous breakdowns. I, a “holdout,” was subjected to serious assault by landlord’s agents, Public “Safety” (PSD) with ongoing medical consequences, no prosecution, but in this “forgotten world” between City and State, anything goes – especially when the landlord, Urban American, holds City and State pension funds.
Through the Section 8 program the Federal Government enriched slumlords beyond the riches of Croesus, and enabled them to hold tenants hostage to poverty and the threat of eviction. Many simple trampled on the rights of tenants, many of whom were legal immigrants uncertain of rights and recourses. Others were seniors and disabled tenants, hardworking retirees, just looking for a safe and quiet place to live out their years.
This also allowed rents to soar, inflating property costs beyond any reasonable index of value. Warehousing, demolition, eviction by devious and dangerous means became the norm in NYC. The rent of a roach infested hovel soared above a monthly mortgage for a brand new house in the ‘burbs, but the prevailing culture was always, “it’s better to rent” – except for the landlords.
Section 8 was allegedly turned over to tenants in the form of “sticky vouchers,” that applied to the tenants, not the landlords. It’s administration went to a shady outfit also known as DHCR – Department of Housing and Community Renewal. They lost documents, withhold payments, allowing the landlord to harass tenants into Housing Court, wearing them down, one by one, till they move to nursing homes, have nervous breakdowns, or are taken in by families.
They know to the penny, exactly how much the tenant has in his/her bank account. That might seem a reasonable fail-safe in a decent, honest society, but such disclosures put the tenant at high risk of being defrauded.
When a State Senator’s aide said “a lot of money was missing from DHCR,” her job was terminated. DHCR’s gouging and harassing of tenants certainly gives weight to that accusation. DHCR seems to be an extension of Jerome Belson associates with the same staff, and the same nefarious connection and illegal communication with the local, villanous “community enforcer.”
Roosevelt Island Gulag desperately needs Federal oversight. The abuses of tenants in post Mitchell Lama Eastwood are unconscionable, and blatant violations of Constitutional Rights occur daily.
I am at risk of assault by NY State Public “Safety” employees every time I step outside my door, and even in my home. They have already caused serious injury which has been covered up by all NY State representatives. I mostly walk with a buddyguard.
The administrator of Roosevelt Island, a political appointee with a face like a poisoned slug, and condescending attitude, ignores all requests for action, responding to complaints with personal and sexually charged remarks.
America needs to reconsider the attitude of subsidizing abusive organizations (real estate, arts) and return power to the hands and hearts of her individual citizens.
ACORN need not apply.