James Protects Homeowners Facing Water Lien Sale
Public Advocate James yesterday called called for low- and middle-income homeowners of one-to-three family, owner-occupied homes to be excluded from the annual water lien sale, and instead establish new education and advocacy programs to inform homeowners of their rights and responsibilities, including the creation of a citywide Homeowner Advocate.
James’ proposal comes as the City water tax lien sales is to take place today.
“Every homeowner has a responsibility to pay their bills, but the punishment for late payment should not be selling the debt to private investors, who then charge high fees and force our working families into foreclosure,” said James. “Rather than imposing additional fines and liens, we must focus on programs that educate homeowners about their responsibilities and their rights, including payment plans. Owning a home is no small task, and we must create a stronger framework to support homeowners and not place undue burdens on our hardworking families.”
Every May, the City sells bonds that are backed by the water liens to a trust. This entity then has the ability to collect the debt through a “servicer” and charge high interest rates, compounded daily, on unpaid debt. Low- and middle-income owners of Class 1 properties (one-to-three family homes) are adversely impacted by the lien sale. Ninety days, 60 days, and 10 days ahead of the list, the City’s Department of Finance publishes a list of eligible properties for the lien sale. A visualization of lien sales by neighborhood is available here.
Maisel Announces Mosquito Control Spraying
City Councilman Alan Maisel (Canarsie, Marine Park, Gerritsen Beach, Mill Basin) announced via Facebook that the City’s Department of Health and Mental Hygiene will conduct its first aerial larvicide application, as part of their mosquito control program, from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. today, May 12 to Saturday, May 14 weather permitting.
The communities in his council district that will receive this application are: Marine Park (marsh areas bounded by Avenue U to the north; Gerritsen Avenue to the west; Belt Parkway to the south; and Flatbush Avenue to the east), and Fresh Creek Basin (marsh areas bounded by Louisiana Avenue to the east, E 108th Street to the west; Stanley Avenue to the north; and Belt Parkway to the south).
Golden Hosts Public Safety Town Hall
Bay Ridge State Senator Martin J. Golden will host a public safety town hall tonight regarding public safety with 68th Precinct with Commanding Officer
Captain Joseph Hayward.
The event will feature a crime update and a question and answer session. The town hall comes as felony crime for the area is down more than eight percent for the year, according to the latest police figures.
The event is slated for 7 p.m. tonight at the Bay Ridge Manor, 476-76th Street.
Cornegy Bill Protecting Building Workers Signed Into Law
Bedford-Stuyvesant City Council Member Robert Cornegy Jr. this week saw Mayor Bill de Blasio sign a bill he sponsored that protects workers displaced when a building in which they are employed gets sold.
The bill, Intro. 1004-A, strengthens a law passed in 2002, the Displaced Building Services Worker Protection Act, and mandates that whenever a building service worker gets displaced because of a change in building ownership or a transfer of contract, the new owner or contractor must retain the workers for a period of 90 days.
After the 90-day transition period, the successor employer or contractor would be required to evaluate the employees and offer continued employment if his or her employment is deemed satisfactory. No less than 15 days before the sale or change in control, the incumbent owner or contractor must post a notice with information regarding the change in control and employees’ rights during the transition.
The measure will help prevent employers from shutting their doors on individuals and families who depend on these incomes to get by.
“Service work is honorable work and the families who made their livings, bought homes and raised families on these jobs built communities like the ones I represent. We could not allow the original Displaced Building Service Workers Act to become obsolete. With the help of 32BJ and other building service workers across the city, I am proud that we updated this model law to keep pace with the changing times,” said Cornegy at the bill signing.
“Building service workers and their families are still worthy of and in need of reasonable protections to keep their jobs secure at times of transition. Today’s bill signifies the progress we as a city are making to improve family life in all boroughs.”
Lander Says Still Time To Register For PTA 5K Fun Run
Park Slope City Council Member Brad Lander announced there is still time to register for this Saturday’s 9th Annual Brooklyn PTA 5K Fun Run, where schools from across the borough come together in Prospect Park to race/walk/stroll/bike/scoot, build community, and raise money for schools across Brooklyn. You can sign up to participate here.
“Thanks again for your understanding and flexibility in working with our new date. I know we are just a few days out, but there is still time to register,” Lander said via his emailed newsletter.
For those of you who have already signed up, a few announcements:
- Early bib pickup will take place this Friday, May 13 from 4-7 p.m. at two locations:
- Johnny Mack’s Bar & Grill, 1114 8th Avenue at 12th Street
- Jack Rabbit, 151 7th Avenue between Garfield and Carroll
- Rain or shine, we run!
- Check in will begin the morning of the run at 8:45. New registrations will be accepted on site with payment by either cash or check.
- Schools that would like to gather their teams together before the race should arrange a sign or location in advance.
- We’ll start the day off with a 9:30 AM welcome, before beginning the race at 10.
Councilmembers Carlos Menchaca, Stephen Levin and Laurie Cumbo; Brooklyn Borough President Eric L. Adams and State Senator Jesse Hamilton are among the co-sponsors of the event.
For futher information please contact [email protected].