Alfonso Quiroz

Alfonso Quiroz

Twitter: @alfonsoquiroz Instagram: @quiroza

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)

I have stood with many tenants and advocacy groups in my district and home neighborhoods to protest bad landlords, advocated canceling rent and supported progressive housing policies.

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

Own a co-op, condo or private home

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)

The two main housing priorities are keeping people in their homes and building access to new affordable housing. To address the first issue, I support keeping RGB rents level or even lower as we move through the pandemic and expanding access to rental subsidy programs including SCRIE, DRIE and ONE SHOT to stem the tide of homelessness. I look forward to learning more about housing policy once in the Council and learn how to help grow the stock of affordable units in Queens.

9. Do you believe that housing should be de-commodified?  yes

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

I am still learning more about de-commodified housing approaches and how to best implement realistic policies in New York City. I fully support taking initial action against slumlords and large irresponsible landlords and developers by raising land taxes and disincentivizing such actors from putting profit over people.

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?

The primary answer to NYCHA’s issues comes from a lack of steady access to capital for infrastructure needs. We need to raise revenue through various means including billionaires tax, pied-a-terre, and land value tax to create sustainable funding streams for NYCHA. We should also create a new management system that has NYCHA residents sit on the board and make decision that affects their daily lives.

14. Do you support the NYCHA 2.0 Rental Assistance Demonstration (RAD)/ PACT program and other privatization schemes? Depends

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

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)

The rezoning would need to include: i- truly affordable housing for low income and middle class New Yorkers, ii- good paying union jobs, iii- a robust environmental impact study, iv- plan to prevent displacement and gentrification

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

I would mandate that all new developments in the district that creates new housing hold workshops independent of the community board to welcome members of the community before the ULURP process even begins.

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 50% Percentage of Unhoused New Yorkers  25%

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

In recent years, there has been a lot of new development around Jackson Heights under plans like the Mayor’s MIH program. However, the affordability levels set for the already limited proportion of these units is out of reach for most New Yorkers. Especially in an area that boasts the diversity that Central Queens offers, I stand against these developments and their ‘affordable’ options as currently presented.

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? Yes

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 strongly support tenant advocacy, organizing and utilizing the media to go after unscrupulous landlords in support of my constituents. I would also work to increase funding for the enforcement wing of NYC HPD.

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 do not think the pro-profit homeless shelter system is the answer to a longterm solution for the homelessness crisis in our city, but as we move towards a permanent solution and the creation of greater supportive housing units, I will not oppose their creation for short term use.

32. Do you agree that all evictions are bad? No

32a. If no, why not? I stand by the fact that most evictions are immoral and that we should not be evicting anyone during this public health emergency. However, we must keep legal space for bad actors that flagrantly flout laws and are a danger or nuisance to neighbors and themselves.

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? No

35a. If yes, what will you do to influence the board to do so?  (500 characters)
No, but I do think we should increase rental subsidies and expand current subsidy programs.

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? No