FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
August 9, 2005
MAYOR MICHAEL R. BLOOMBERG SIGNS LEGISLATION INCREASING THE MAXIMUM INCOME LEVEL AT WHICH INDIVIDUALS ARE ELIGIBLE FOR SENIOR CITIZEN RENT INCREASE EXEMPTION
Remarks by Mayor Bloomberg at a Public Hearing on Local Laws
“The next bill before me is Introductory Number 666, sponsored by Council Members Gentile, Baez, Addabbo, Brewer, Fidler, Foster, Gennaro, Gonzalez, James, Katz, Koppell, Nelson, Recchia, Sears, Stewart, Liu, Jackson, Reyna, Comrie, Speaker Miller and Public Advocate, Betsy Gotbaum. This bill increases the maximum income level at which individuals are eligible for the Senior Citizen Rent Increase Exemption (also known as “SCRIE”) program.
“The SCRIE program protects eligible senior citizen tenants with annual incomes below a certain threshold from rent increases. Currently, in order to qualify, an applicant must be at least sixty-two years of age, and live in a rent-stabilized, rent-controlled, Mitchell-Lama, or other publicly regulated apartment. Additionally, these seniors must have an annual household income of not more than $24,000, and be paying one-third or more of their income in rent. Eligible tenants are exempted from paying any rent increases.
“Earlier this year, in the City’s Preliminary and Executive Budgets, I proposed increasing the income threshold for SCRIE eligibility from $24,000 to $29,000. This proposed change recognizes that seniors on fixed incomes constantly feel upward pressures on their day to day expenses, and what was affordable yesterday, may well be unaffordable next month. I am pleased that the City Council agreed with our administration on this point. The legislation I sign today will increase the annual income threshold from the current $24,000 to $29,000 over a five-year period in increments of $1,000 per year.
“Over the years the SCRIE program has become a vital tool to help seniors remain in their homes as rents continue to increase. This increase in income threshold will enable more individuals to qualify for the program and give these seniors the peace of mind to know that they will be secure in their homes.
Edward Skyler / Jordan Barowitz (212) 788-2958
Watch the video in 56k or 300k