LEGISLATIVE AFFAIRS: July Legislative Update

Philip Weiden | July 28, 2021

Philip Weiden

It is now the end of July, and the COVID rental assistance has not yet been processed by Gov. Andrew Cuomo. To date, New York is only one of two states that has not released its COVID rental funding assistance to tenants and landlords.

This has exacerbated an already dire situation for those tenants unable to pay their rent and for landlords who in turn lack the rental income to pay for taxes, maintenance and meet their mortgage commitments.

The application process, and the website have been riddled with errors despite the state having had the better part of six months to prepare for this. It was repeatedly stated by members of both parties that rental aid would be included in the relief packages that have passed Congress. The state is also flush with record cash since having received state and local aid from the federal coronavirus relief package this year. The state has also collected considerably more tax revenue than anticipated due to the stimulus payments that have gone out to people in the form of relief checks.

It is also critical that this money gets out the “door” as soon as possible for another reason. If the money is not used for its intended purpose within a certain time frame it then gets returned to the federal government for reallocation. Often federal assistance comes with a use it or lose it mandate. It would be unfortunate if this sorely needed aid were to go to waste.

Please respond to the NYSAR Call for Action that has been posted on Facebook, the website and emailed to HGAR members.

Finally, please invest in RPAC. It is critical that we support RPAC at a time when our industry is facing political threats at the state and federal level. Thanks to your RPAC contributions we stopped “Good Cause Eviction” and got pandemic unemployment insurance passed for independent contractors. Stay tuned for updates on this story.

Philip Weiden
Legislative Affairs columnist Philip Weiden is the Government Affairs Director for the Hudson Gateway Association of Realtors.