FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: March 9, 2011
SCHUMER URGES PARKVIEW APARTMENTS OWNER TO KEEP BUILDING AFFORDABLE FOR HUNDREDS OF FLATBUSH RESIDENTS
With Over 127 Subsidized Units, Parkview Apartments is a Haven of Affordability In Increasingly Expensive Flatbush
Parkview Owner Is Threatening To Opt Out Of Section 8 Housing; Move Would Put Units On Private Market And Force Most Residents Out
Schumer: We Must Preserve Affordable Housing To Ensure Hard Working Families and Seniors Have A Safe and Decent Place to Live
U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer today urged the owner of Parkview Apartments in Flatbush, Brooklyn, to renew his Section 8 project based housing contract with the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) or sell this property to a preservation buyer committed to maintaining the building’s affordability. His call came in light of recent reports that the owner does not plan to renew his Section 8 contract, meaning that these units would go on the private market and no longer be affordable for local residents. Schumer, in a letter to the owner, Mr. Neamonitakis, urged him to keep the building affordable in light of rising cost of living in the area, so that local residents can remain in their homes and continue to live in the neighborhood.
“With Flatbush residents facing rising rents and an ever-increasing cost of living, we must make sure that affordable housing, like the Parkview apartments, remains affordable for families and seniors and others,” said Schumer. “For the sake of the hard-working local residents that would have to leave Parkview, I strongly urge the owner of the property to renew his Section 8 contract or sell the property to a buyer committed to keeping the building affordable.”
Parkview Apartments’ Section 8 contract includes several buildings that total 127 subsidized units in Flatbush, Brooklyn. Though there were delays because of improper notices by the owner, he has now sent a new 1-year notice to the tenants and to HUD that he plans to opt-out of the Section 8 program. The tenants at this property have been part of an active tenant association since 2004 and are once again organizing to ensure that these buildings remain affordable by either convincing the owner to renew the contract or sell to a preservation purchaser who would keep the building subsidized. Today, Senator Schumer joins the tenants’ effort to preserve affordability.
Section 8 housing is a Federal housing program, administered by HUD nationwide, that provides subsidies to low-income renters and homeowners in order to limit monthly rent payments to 30% of their monthly income. In order to qualify for for Section 8 housing, residents must make below 50% of the Area Median Income. If Parkview’s units were to go onto the private market, most residents would be forced to leave the building due to increased rents.
A copy of Schumer’s letter to Neamonitakis is below.
Dear Mr. Neamonitakis:
I write to you out of concern for the residents living at Parkview Apartments in Brooklyn, New York and urge you to either renew your Section 8 project based housing contract with the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) or sell this property to a preservation buyer committed to maintaining the building’s affordability.
I understand that the Parkview Apartments contract includes several buildings that total 127 subsidized units located in a neighborhood that has become increasingly expensive to live in. As a result, there is valid concern among tenants and community leaders that the permanent affordability of these units will also be lost if you do not renew your Section 8 contract.
New York City has a scarce supply of affordable housing units and it is vital that we work together to preserve this supply to ensure that hard working residents, including seniors and families, have a safe and decent place to live. Please consider working with the residents at Parkview Apartments to maintain the affordability of these buildings.
Thank you for consideration of this request. If you have any additional questions feel free to contact Megan Richardson or Jonah Crane of my staff at (202) 224-6542.
Charles E. Schumer
United States Senator