GOTHAM GAZETTE: SEARCHLIGHT 2002: Voting Records - Housing

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VOTING RECORDS: HOUSING

Read more about housing on Gotham Gazette.

Click here for complete reports from the council committee in this topic

LAWS PASSED IN 2002
BILLS PENDING


LAWS PASSED IN 2002

ACCESS TO EMERGENCY DOMESTIC VIOLENCE SERVICES AND SHELTER (Intro 120A) The law adds a new section to the Administrative Code which specifically prescribes that domestic violence victims who apply for emergency shelter or related services cannot be denied such shelter or services solely based on the lack of documentary evidence of the incidence of domestic violence. It also defines family members as those who are not only related by blood, but also as those who exist in non-traditional relationships, whether they share a child and are unmarried or have lived together.

SPONSORING MEMBERS: Council Members DeBlasio, Baez, Boyland, Brewer, Clarke, Diaz, Gerson, Monserrate, Reyna, Liu, Serrano and Stewart; also Council Members Gennaro, Jackson, Koppell, Lopez, Martinez, Quinn, Rivera, Vann, Sanders and Comrie.

COUNCIL VOTE:
49 for, 0 against, 2 absent
Approved by the council December 4, 2002
Signed by mayor December 19, 2002

YES: Joseph Addabbo, Jr., Tony Avella, Maria Baez, Charles Barron, Tracy Boyland, Gale Brewer, Yvette Clarke, Leroy Comrie, James Davis, Bill DeBlasio, Ruben Diaz, Erik Dilan, Simcha Felder, Lewis Fidler, Helen Foster, Dennis Gallagher, James Gennaro, Eric Gioia, Martin Golden, Sarah Gonzalez, Robert Jackson, Allan Jennings, Melinda Katz, Andrew Lanza, Margarita Lopez, John Liu, Miguel Martinez, Michael McMahon, Gifford Miller, Hiram Monserrate, Eva Moskowitz, Michael Nelson, James Oddo, Bill Perkins, Madeline Provenzano, Christine Quinn, Domenic Recchia, Philip Reed, Diana Reyna, Joel Rivera, James Sanders, Larry Seabrook, Helen Sears, Jose Serrano, Kendall Stewart, Peter Vallone, Jr., Albert Vann, David Weprin, David Yassky.

ABSENT: Alan Gerson, G. Oliver Koppell

UPDATING ELECTRICAL CODES (Intro 284)
This law updates the city's electrical code for the first time in more than three decades and brings it in line with a recognized industry standard, the 1999 National Electrical Code.

SPONSORING MEMBERS: By Council Members Provenzano, Comrie, Felder, Fidler, Nelson, Sears, Stewart and Weprin (by request of the Mayor)

COUNCIL VOTE: 49 for, 0 against
Approved by council November 20, 2002
Signed by mayor December 2, 2002

ABSENT: Martin Golden, Philip Reed.

CONSTRUCTION OF AFFORDABLE HOUSING (Intro 87)
This law expands the application of 421-A real property tax benefits to aid in the construction of affordable housing. The 421-A program was created in 1971 to provide a tax incentive for the construction of new multiple dwellings on sites that are either vacant or underutilized. This change will enable developers of sites zoned for residential use to take advantage of this tax benefit at any time three years prior to the start of construction. However, some council members complained that this measure did not go far enough in helping to build affordable housing.

SPONSORING MEMBERS: By Council Members Provenzano, Comrie and McMahon.

COUNCIL VOTE: 36 for, 11 against, 2 abstaining
Approved by council September 25, 2002
Signed by mayor December 16, 2002

NO: Maria Baez, Charles Barron, Erik Martin Dilan, Robert Jackson, Margarita Lopez, Miguel Martinez, William Perkins, Diana Reyna, James Sanders, Jr., Albert Vann, David Yassky

ABSTAIN: Gale A. Brewer, Alan J. Gerson.

ABSENT: Allan W. Jennings

PROPERTY TAX EXEMPTION FOR DISABLED AND LOW INCOME (Intro 264A)
In 1998, the State Legislature created a new benefit within the Senior Citizen Homeowner Exemption that provided a tax exemption for disabled homeowners with limited incomes. That same year, the City Council enacted legislation providing for this benefit in New York City. Intro. 264-A adopts the most recent increase in income qualification level for the 50 percent tax exemption passed by the State Legislature during its last session, raising the income limit by $1,000 to $21,500.

SPONSORING MEMBERS: By Council Member Weprin, Clarke, Comrie, Davis, Dilan, Gennaro, Gerson, Gioia, Jackson, Jennings, Koppell, Lopez, Martinez, McMahon, Monserrate, Nelson, Perkins, Rivera, Sanders, Seabrook, Stewart, Vann, Yassky, Boyland and Brewer; also Council Members Quinn and Katz.

COUNCIL VOTE: 42 for, 0 against
Approved by council October 9, 2002
Signed by mayor October 25, 2002

ABSENT: James F. Gennaro, Alan J. Gerson


BILLS PENDING

MORE STRINGENT LEAD POISONING LAWS (Intro 101)
This legislation would classify lead dust as a hazard and would require the city's housing department to conduct inspections of buildings where a landlord has a record of poor maintenance. Landlords would be required to clean contaminated apartments within six months. (Read more about this issue in Gotham Gazette).

SPONSORING MEMBERS: Council members Bill Perkins, Margarita Lopez, Christine Quinn, Philip Reed, Tracy Boyland, Joel Rivera, Gale Brewer, Robert Jackson, John Liu, David Yassky, Charles Barron, Diana Reyna, Yvette Clarke, James Sanders, Dominic Recchia, Albert Vann, Melinda Katz, Alan Gerson, Eric Gioia, Maria Baez, Bill DeBlasio, Jose Serrano, Helen Foster, Hiram Monserrate, Allan Jennings, Larry Seabrook, Joseph Addabbo, Eva Moskowitz, Oliver Koppell, James Davis and the Public Advocate (Ms. Betsy Gotbaum); also Councilmember Miguel Martinez

Click here for the status of this bill


TENANTS BILL OF RIGHTS (Intro 115)
This bill states that all tenants in apartments have the right to heating (at a minimum of 68 degrees), hot water, secure front doors, smoke detectors, and a pest-free environment. Also electrical, plumbing, and ventilation systems must be kept in safe working order by the landlord. This bill accompanies Intro 162, which aims to increase enforcement of existing safe-housing regulations.

SPONSORING MEMBERS: The Speaker (Councilmember Gifford Miller) and council members Bill Perkins, Christine Quinn, Philip Reed, Maria Baez, Gale Brewer, Yvette Clarke, Bill DeBlasio, Alan Gerson, Robert Jackson, Melinda Katz, Miguel Martinez, Hiram Monserrate, Michael Nelson, Dominici Recchia, Diana Reyna, Larry Seabrook, Jose Serrano and David Weprin; also council members Olvier Koppell, Margarita Lopez and James Sanders.

Click here for the status of this bill

HOW A BILL BECOMES A LAW IN NEW YORK CITY?

When a bill (called an "Intro" in the City Council) is introduced, it is sent to one of 27 council committees for consideration. The chair of the committee decides whether or not to hold a hearing on the measure; at a hearing, the council listens to debate and testimony. The chair then can call for a vote on the measure. A majority of the committee members must vote in favor of an Intro for it to pass. If the chair chooses not hold a hearing or to not call a vote, the bill can sit indefinitely with no action taken.

Once a bill passes out of committee, it is sent to the full council. If passed by a majority (at least 26 of the 51 council members), the bill is sent to the mayor, who can also hold a public hearing. The mayor then must choose to sign or veto the bill. If the mayor signs the bill, it becomes a local law. If the mayor vetoes the bill, he or she must return it to the council at the next scheduled council meeting. The City Council has 30 days to override the mayoral veto by a two-thirds majority. In this event, the bill becomes a local law.

If the mayor does not sign or veto a bill within 30 days after receiving it from the council, it is considered approved.