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With rent stabilization coming to Nyack, some see it as a saving grace while others consider it a ‘blunt instrument’

Tenants in the Village of Nyack will soon have a new tool in the struggle against rising rents and hard-to-come-by housing units.

The board voted unanimously in November to cap rent increases in buildings constructed before 1974 that have more than 25 rental units and to provide those tenants with protections like automatic lease renewals.

The Housing Stability and Tenant Protection Act was enacted in 2019. It allows localities in the New York State to impose rent stabilization on landlords of certain buildings if the area’s vacancy rate is under 5%.

Until 2019, there were geographical restrictions in place. But now, any  municipality in the state can enact the ETPA if it meets certain criteria.

While the vote to do so in Nyack was unanimous, a prior public hearing highlighted a range of opinions.

“Nyack was a place where people who were not rich could live. You don’t want it to become a place only for rich people,” said Alexander Bursztein, director of the Legal Aid Society of Rockland County, according to News 12 Westchester.

But there were also those who said that passing the burden on to landlords in a “blunt instrument” that disincentives landlords from taking good care of their buildings.

“I have bills too,” one said. “Everyone does.”

Nyack People & Places, a weekly series that features photos and profiles of citizens and scenes near Nyack, NY, is sponsored by Sun River Health.

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