Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Hoboken Revolt weighs in on rent control ballot question

Hoboken Revolt announces:


As a taxpayer coalition, Hoboken Revolt has taken the position that passage of the upcoming referendum on rent control is in the best interest of not only the taxpayers but the entire Hoboken community.  This is why we are asking everyone to VOTE YES TO CHANGE THE RENT CONTROL LAW.

By voting YES you are agreeing that only condo units and one to four unit buildings be allowed to come off of rent control - but only upon vacancy.  This referendum does not apply to large scale apartment buildings and has nothing to do with developers and real estate agents.  It has to do with YOU, the taxpayers of condos and one to four unit buildings.

Under the proposed change, rental increases for a condo unit being rented or an apartment in a one to four family building must follow the rent control formula, until the rental unit is next vacated.  At that time and only then would the owner be allowed to raise the rent of the newly vacated unit to market level.

Artificially holding down rents is a direct loss for small property owners.  Rent control on such small buildings is especially burdensome when a one to four family is often the owner's major savings, which is the case for many long-time residents of Hoboken.  These taxpayers must absorb the loss of income even if there are incoming tenants who can afford to pay higher rents.  In many instances these buildings can not be maintained to the same standard as owner-occupied homes and rentals with market level rents, and that downgrades the neighboring community.


The argument that removing small buildings and condo units from the current rent control law is somehow a disadvantage to low income renters is baseless.  There are no restrictions on a tenant's income in order to lease a rent controlled apartment.  Other than government supported housing, no other rentals are ever subject to income testing.  Therefore, no advantage exists anyway for anyone, no matter their income on the units included in the proposed change.

For over a decade the City Council has vowed to reform the law, but has failed due to misguided political pressure.  This is why the proposed change has been brought to the voters of Hoboken to be decided on November 5th.  It is YOUR turn to change the law.  Give the taxpayers of condos and one to four unit buildings the ability to make Hoboken a just and better community.  Vote YES on the referendum to change the rent control laws.



Update: Hoboken Revolt requested an update to this release and it was accommodated.