Owners representing more than 150,000 rental units in the City, and the Real Estate Board of New York (REBNY), the City’s leading real estate trade association, pledged in an open letter to be published in several newspapers not to execute any warrant of eviction for the next 90 days in response to the ongoing Coronavirus (COVID-19) crisis.
The letter came as the State’s Chief Administrative Judge Lawrence Malks directed courts across the state to suspend operations, which will include eviction proceedings and pending evictions, until further notice as the state continues to combat the novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.
The directive followed a decision from last Friday to implement a one week moratorium on evictions in New York City.
In the open letter to residents, William C. Rudin, REBNY chairman, James Whelan, REBNY president, and building owners and managers, said, “In crises, New Yorkers pull together. Now is a time for everyone to do their share.
“No one knows how bad the impact of the COVID-19 virus will be. That’s why New Yorkers are taking extraordinary steps to slow the spread of the virus and protect our most vulnerable people.
“We want to do our share too. As owners and managers of more than 150,000 rental apartments in the city, we will help our residents weather this crisis safely in their homes.
“Starting immediately, we are voluntarily pledging that we will not execute any warrant of eviction for the next ninety days unless it is for criminal or negligent behavior that jeopardizes the life, health or safety of other residents. With all the stress, health risk and economic suffering going on now, no one should have to worry about losing their place to live during this crisis.
“With New York at risk, we must come together and protect our residents. We can’t shake hands or hug each other right now. But we must all turn toward each other and help each other. Together, we will survive this crisis — and so will this wonderful City we all love.”
The New York State Association for Affordable Housing (NYSAFAH) applauded the move, but president and CEO Jolie Milstein, said mor eneeds to be done to help already struggling to make ends .
“The immediate next step is for our government leaders to develop a comprehensive plan to address the needs of the many New Yorkers who will face continued housing-related uncertainty in the weeks and months after the crisis subsides.,” said Milstein.
“NYSAFAH and our members stand ready to work with elected officials to create a solution that will help New Yorkers in need of housing security to weather this storm.”
The REBNY Pledge Signees include:
A&E Real Estate, Douglas F. Eisenberg
Blackstone, Ken Caplan and Kathleen McCarthy
The Brodsky Organization, The Brodsky Family
Brookfield Property Group, Ric Clark
The Douglaston Companies, Jeff Levine
The Durst Organization, The Durst Family
Extell Development Company
Fetner Properties, Hal Fetner and Damon Pazzaglini
Fisher Brothers, Winston Fisher
Glenwood, The Litwin Family
Gotham Organization, Inc., David L. Picket and Joel I. Picket
Jack Resnick & Sons, Jonathan Resnick
Lalezarian Properties, Kevin Lalezarian
LeFrak, Richard S. LeFrak
Manhattan Skyline Company and Donald Zucker Company, Donald Zucker and Laurie Zucker
The Moinian Group, Joseph Moinian
Muss Development, Jason Muss
Ogden CAP Properties
Related Companies, Jeff T. Blau
Rose Associates, Inc., Amy Rose
Rudin Management Company, Bill Rudin and Eric Rudin
RXR Realty, Scott Rechler
Silverstein Properties, Larry Silverstein and Marty Burger
Taconic Partners, Paul Pariser and Charles Bendit
Two Trees, Jed Walentas
Vornado Realty Trust, David R. Greenbaum