After passing in the city of Albany, 'good cause' eviction law could come to other Hudson Valley towns
Colin Kinniburgh reports for New York Focus that on July 19 Albany became the first municipality in New York to pass “good cause” eviction protections, which would stop landlords from evicting tenants or increasing rents more than five percent without justification. Now Hudson Valley activists want to pass good cause laws in other towns and cities. “Housing prices here in Columbia and Greene counties have just gone through the roof,” says Michael Gattine-Suarez, Hudson-based managing director of the Hudson-Catskill Housing Coalition. Certainly, more people have moved to the Hudson Valley since the pandemic began. A New York Times survey showed the city of Hudson saw the greatest spike in in-migration of any metro area in the country from 2019 to 2020, with Kingston ranking second. Pattern for Progress, a Newburgh-based research group, found that median home prices increased by 23 percent across the Hudson Valley from early 2020 to early 2021. In Greene County, the New York State Association of Realtors reports a more than 70 percent increase in median home values from the same time last year. “With that comes speculative investors, who are just buying homes here in the Hudson Valley…to make a quick buck,” Gattine-Suarez says. He claims some landlords are doubling rents, and that without any kind of rent stabilization system in place, “there are no checks and balances.” Tiffany Garriga, Democratic majority leader on Hudson’s city council, said some of her fellow councilmembers are “a little skeptical” of good cause, “but once they get a full understanding of the law, I think they will understand and see that it works for both sides.... People are getting priced out, bought out, and the outcome is that there’s no option. There’s nothing affordable,” Garriga said. “We’re hitting a mark in the city where there’s absolutely no place to live.” Read more about this story at New York Focus.