Mayor Bill de Blasio today announced two new appointments to the Rent Guidelines Board: David Reiss, a Brooklyn Law School professor specialized in property law, and Hilary Botein, a professor at Baruch College’s Marxe School of Public and International Affairs. The board is responsible for establishing rent adjustments for approximately one million dwelling units subject to rent stabilization in New York City. Reiss and Botein will serve as public members of the Board.
“Professors Reiss and Botein are experts in real estate law and urban policy planning and will serve New Yorkers fairly as they work to strike the right balance on any rent adjustments,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio. “I am honored to have them accept these positions on the Rent Guidelines Board as we work to make this City more just and more equitable, and thank K. Sabeel Rahman and Steven Flax who have served New Yorkers so well.”
On Tuesday, Mayor Bill de Blasio cheered a state Supreme court ruling to uphold a recent rent freeze enacted by the Rent Guidelines Board. In 2015 and 2016, the Rent Guidelines Association froze rates for people living in 1 million of the city’s rent-stabilized apartments.
“People think when you’re up against very powerful forces with lots of money, a lot of times, the little guy loses. Well, we’re not surprised at the notion that when a rent freeze was put in place, it didn’t surprise us that the landlords would take us to court. Didn’t surprise us at all. But you know what the court said? The court put the tenants’ needs ahead of the landlords’ greed,” de Blasio said.
In a statement, the president of the Rent Stabilization Association, which brought the lawsuit, said the mayor has corrupted the RGB’s practices, and that he is putting politics ahead of good housing policy.