Adolfo Abreu

Adolfo Abreu

adolfo.nyc

Twitter: @Adolfo4Council Instagram: Adolfo4Council

Do you believe housing is a human right? Yes

What type of action have you taken in the past around issues of housing justice? (500 characters)

In my time as the Organizing Director of the Northwest Bronx Community and Clergy Coalition, I represented our organization in the Coordinating Committee of the Housing Justice for All Coalition. I worked with tenant leaders across the state, and in 2019 we passed the historic 2019 Rent Laws and prior to leaving the organization supported our tenant leaders in their fight to #CancelRent

3. What type of housing do you currently live in?              

Unregulated Rental Apt

4. Are you, or have you ever been, a landlord? No

4a. If yes, where & how many apts. did you own?

5. Does your campaign accept contributions from real estate developers (including related individuals), corporate lobbyists, organizations that participate in the carceral system, and/or landlords? No

6. Have you ever worked in, or had another affiliation with, the Real Estate industry?  No

7. Have any of your campaign or advisory staff held a position as a corporate lobbyist or an executive role with the Real Estate industry? No

6. & 7. If so, how can we be assured you will have tenants’ interests in mind?  (250 characters)

8. What do you think are the most pressing Housing issues & what action would you take to address them as a City Council Member?  (1000 characters)

Prior to the pandemic, this district had the highest eviction rates in the city and 41% of renters in Community Board 5 (situated in this district) are rent burdened, paying more than 30% of their income towards rent. That is why I fully support Intro 1104, which would expand who’s eligible for Right to Counsel and double the number of families that qualify for an attorney in housing court.  In district 14, we have many “affordable housing” development projects in the works that exclude the vast majority of Bronxites and New Yorkers both from the process and from being able to access it. We need a radically different approach to development. We will not solve the current crisis without heavily investing in models of social housing in order to achieve a vision of a homes guarantee in the city.

9. Do you believe that housing should be de-commodified?  Prior to the pandemic, this district had the highest eviction rates in the city and 41% of renters in Community Board 5 (situated in this district) are rent burdened, paying more than 30% of their income towards rent. That is why I fully support Intro 1104, which would expand who’s eligible for Right to Counsel and double the number of families that qualify for an attorney in housing court.  In district 14, we have many “affordable housing” development projects in the works that exclude the vast majority of Bronxites and New Yorkers both from the process and from being able to access it. We need a radically different approach to development. We will not solve the current crisis without heavily investing in models of social housing in order to achieve a vision of a homes guarantee in the city.

9a. What would you do as an elected representative to move that vision forward? (500 characters)

Yes

10. Do you support the move to legalize basement apts?  Yes

11. Do you support the concept of rent regulation and eviction protections? Yes

12. Do you believe in publicly owned and controlled housing? Yes

13. NYCHA has suffered from chronic underfunding, neglect and disrepair. What do you see as the best strategies to rectify these problems?

I commit to identifying and fighting for funding streams like revenue raisers to address NYCHA’s capital needs and operating costs so that public housing tenants can live in affordable and dignified housing. I oppose the privatization of public housing through programs like RAD and believe that our residents should be able to collectively own their buildings and have decision making power in the operations, both within their buildings and throughout the public housing system.

14. Do you support the NYCHA 2.0 Rental Assistance Demonstration (RAD)/ PACT program and other privatization schemes? No

15. Would you support an immediate moratorium on the sale or lease of all City-owned land and air rights to for-profit developers? Yes

16. Would you require that any housing built on public land be 100% permanently affordable to low- and extremely-low income New Yorkers? Yes

17. Would you aggressively use City programs and eminent domain to take ownership of distressed properties and transfer them to community control such as Community Land Trusts?      Yes

18. Would you end the custom of deferring to local council members on land use decisions? Yes

19. What standards would a rezoning need to meet for you to support it? (500 characters)

Our communities need development that is affordable to them, projects that make investments in people and businesses in the area, and provides meaningful opportunities for employment and ownership. We need high road jobs that ensure workers can sufficiently provide for their families and residents will not be displaced. We cannot continue to be reactive in our approaches to development and have to be more intentional in how we build and strengthen our communities without displacing them.

20. What reforms to zoning would you propose to increase community input into development?  (500 characters)

I fully support reforming how development is done so it doesn’t displace our people, reevaluating and reforming ULURP, and moving towards a racially equitable, comprehensive planning process that centers and affirms the lives of our people, gives our communities real decision-making power, and does not aim to displace them from their neighborhoods.

21. Would you pass and enforce a true racial impact study as part of any rezoning?  Yes

Percentage of people who are below 200% of the poverty line 100% Percentage of Unhoused New Yorkers  100%

23. What is/has been the most important land use fight in your district and what position did you take on it?  (500 characters)

This district has been subjected to multiple inequitable development processes over the last few years. The Jerome Avenue rezoning being the most recent example, which I organized against. In 2008, Bloomberg, alongside the Related Companies, attempted to build a shopping mall in the Kingsbridge Armory. The project would have displaced the small businesses in Kingsbridge Road, offered poverty-wage jobs, and would have accelerated the displacement & gentrification.

24. Would you support increased funding and oversight of NYC Housing Preservation and Development (HPD) and Mayor’s Tenant Protection Unit to educate tenants on their rights to organize in NYC rental buildings? NoYes

25. Will you support the City seeking injunctions against the landlords on the Right to Counsel’s “worst evictors list,” barring worst evictors from bringing eviction cases while under investigation, and implementing good cause evictions protections? Yes

26. Do you support expanding funding and oversight of the City’s emergency repair program to correct hazardous violations and send the owner the bill? Yes

27. How would you use your office to put pressure on landlords to make repairs and stop harassing tenants?  (500 characters)

I would hire tenant organizers and work and fund tenant organizations doing work in the district. I would work with tenants to apply pressure to city agencies to step up enforcement in the district, connect tenants with legal advocacy organizations

28. Do you support the Small Business Jobs Survival Act (SBJSA—Int 0737-2018) and Commercial Rent Stabilization bill (Int 1796-2019) currently in committee in the City Council?Yes

29. Do you support converting hotel rooms into permanently affordable apts? Yes

30. Would you end the practice of police responding to people who are homeless?  Yes

31. Would you oppose homeless shelters being built in your district? No

31a. Why or why not?  (500 characters)

I would not oppose homeless shelters being built in my district but will work towards our reliance on shelters. I will fight to create more permanent and deeply affordable housing for those in the shelter system and redirect dollars we allocated to DHS towards the creation of housing or funding FHEPS vouchers to allow people to exit out of the system.

32. Do you agree that all evictions are bad? Yes

32a. If no, why not?

33. Are you committed to making sure every tenant has free access to counsel in Housing Court? Yes

34. Would you support an eviction moratorium every winter (Heat Season Oct. 1-May 31)?  Yes

35. Do you believe that the Rent Guidelines Board should lower rents for rent stabilized tenants? Yes

35a. If yes, what will you do to influence the board to do so?  (500 characters)
The Rent Guidelines Board as is cannot be allowed to continue. We may have “tenant representation” on RGB but we must strive towards a structure that is more participatory and inclusive of tenants. I will support and lend my voice to tenant organizations and allies during testimonies and will commit to exploring solutions on how to transform the RGB to a tenant friendly space.

36. Have you ever testified on behalf of tenants at a public hearing of the RGB? No

37. Do you support restricting the ability of landlords to discriminate and surveil tenants through the use of technologies such as key fobs, smartphone apps, and facial recognition to gain entry into their apartment units and/or buildings? Yes

38. Will you commit to only vote for a budget that decreases funding to the NYPD? Yes