An Ocean Avenue developer has agreed to pay $12,000 and place another 12 of the building’s apartments under rent stabilization after an investigation by the state Attorney General determined the property had been improperly benefiting from a lucrative real estate tax break, officials announced in a press release.
Attorney General Eric Schneiderman said the developer of the residential building at 1997 Ocean Avenue in Midwood will register 12 additional apartments as rent stabilized. The property owner has also agreed to pay $12,000 in restitution.
The penalties against the Ocean Avenue property owner come after a sweeping two-year Attorney General investigation that found at least 2,332 apartments in New York City should have been rent-stabilized because their landlords received the 421-a affordable housing tax credit, which requires buildings to register in the rent stabilization program or offer their tenants rent-stabilized leases.
In total, 128 landlords agreed to settle with investigators, bringing more than 1,800 units back into the city’s rent-regulated housing stock, according to the Attorney General. New York State created the 421-a tax abatement in 1971 in order to incentivize the construction of rent stabilized housing, which provides certain rights to tenants and protects them from sharp increases in rent.
“Landlords of rental buildings who accept these tax incentives must follow through on their end of the bargain and offer rent-regulated leases to their tenants. That’s a central benefit of the 421-a law,” Schneiderman said. “The return of these apartments to rent stabilization will not only bring economic stability to the families that occupy them, but also honor the spirit of the law as it was intended.”
The Attorney General also identified an additional 52 landlords who continue to deny their tenants rent-stabilized leases, despite receiving the 421-a tax credit. Those landlords could have their 421-a tax benefits revoked, and may face private litigation by tenants as well as additional legal action from state authorities.
Several of the landlords holding out against the Attorney General’s investigation own property in our area. They are listed below.
1775 East 17th Street BH LLC
1775 East 17th Street, near Avenue R in Midwood
Maple 18 Corp.
2603-2607 Albemarle Road, near Rogers Avenue
2605 Albemarle Road, near Rogers Avenue