Friday News Round Up

A quick list!

  1. On Wednesday, Governor Cuomo delivered his third State of the State address. According to the New York Times, the speech is “turn left” for the Governor, who has been seen as a pragmatic if not particularly progressive. He vehemently spoke about enacting harsher gun control laws, making further Sandy repairs, increasing the minimum wage, and extending school days. Of utmost importance to UHAB’s work is the $1B proposal to create more affordable housing.  
  2. A new sub-prime lending tactic is threatening to instigate another mortgage crisis. According to AOL News, the new lending practice allows sellers to lend money to buyers in order to purchase property. However, the buyers do not have good credit and wouldn’t have access to these mortgages otherwise. To us, this tactic seems predatory and, if not regulated, could cause homeowners to undergo foreclosure.  Let’s hope that lenders have learned something from the housing crisis…
  3. In an effort to improve conditions in apartments impacted by Sandy, NYCHA may turn apartments into boiler rooms. Many of the units in NYCHA buildings are vacant, and the boilers are placed in basements that are susceptible to water damage. While this tactic is understandable, we wonder why these vacant units aren’t being filled with displaced persons. Can’t they put the boilers above sea level and also NOT in an apartment? People need apartments around here! Every unit matters!
  4. A Manhattan Federal Court judge ruled this week that parts of NYPD’s controversial Stop and Frisk policy are unconstitutional. Police have been ordered to stop making trespass stops outside private residential buildings immediately. The highly controversial tactic has been called into question for racial profiling and infringing on civil liberties. Another bad policy bites the dust
  5. Hunts Point Produce Market provides more than half of New York’s fruits and veggies, but is considering relocating when its lease is up with the city. The State of New Jersey is wooing the major Bronx employee to the Garden State, with offers of tax breaks. Yesterday, despite rumors that a deal had been reached to stay in N.Y., Hunts Point Market has unexpectedly rejected a lease offer from the City. A move could leave the city with 4,000 fewer jobs, higher food prices, and less fresh options.

And, of course, there’s the trillion dollar coin. Have a good weekend!

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