Gotham Gazette

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Median rents in the city rose 75 percent from 2000 to 2012, while median real incomes declined by nearly 5 percent over the same period, according to a new report by City Comptroller Scott Stringer. Low income residents paid 41 percent of income on rent in '12 compared to 33 percent 12 years prior. In the report the comptroller argues for a focus on those poorest residents and for the stabilization of the public housing system. Simply adding new affordable units is a losing battle, he argues, it is the root causes that must be identified and addressed. But Stringer notes all of the housing woes in the city can't be blamed on gentrification, which the report finds to be growing much slower than perceived. Loopholes in rent regulation are a bigger problem, he says. Landlords seeking to pay off debt from over-leveraged buildings by raising rents is another cause for the housing crisis, according to a separate report released on Tuesday by Council Member Daniel Garodnick.

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Brooklyn Council Member Robert Cornegy Jr. discusses several key topics, including his district facing "the crunch of gentrification."

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