Lt. Governor Ana Maria Archila

Website: www.anamariaforny.com

Social media: @anamariaforny. @anamariaforny

  1. What type of housing do you currently live in?
    Own a co-op, condo or private home
  2. Are you, or have you ever been, a landlord?
    No
    1. If yes, where & how many apts. do/did you own?
      (Note about the current housing question: none of the options quite fits. I recently sold my apartment and have moved in with my partner)
  3. 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
  4. Have you ever worked in, or had another affiliation with, the Real Estate industry? No
  5. 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
    1. If so, how can we be assured you will have tenants’ interests in mind?  (250 characters) 

Values and Vision

  • Do you believe housing is a human right?
    Yes
    • If so, what does that mean to you?   (500 characters)      
      Housing is a human right, and we have a moral obligation to make that right a reality. And let’s be clear: it is the government’s responsibility to ensure safety and shelter, and to make housing accessible for New Yorkers in need. No one in New York–one of the richest states in the country–should worry about where they or their families might sleep at night.
  • What type of action have you taken in the past around issues of housing justice? (500 characters)             
    I am a co-founder and former co-director of Make the Road New York and the Center for Popular Democracy, organizations that prioritize the fight for truly affordable housing for all. I am proud of the major victories we’ve won to strengthen tenant protections in NY and beyond. I’m also proud to have centered the issue of housing from Day One of this campaign and to have joined Housing Justice for All and Met Council in a civil disobedience action in Albany to call for #HomesNotJails.
  • What do you think are the most pressing Housing issues & what action would you take to address them as a state representative?  (1000 characters)
    We need to immediately pass statewide good cause eviction, give tenants the right to form a union, and improve safety regulations and safety enforcement of apartment buildings.
  • I will also fight for a statewide right to counsel.
  • As Lt. Governor, I would also fight to build and preserve at least one million affordable housing units across the state, including through a dramatically new approach to housing creation using the Empire State Development (ESD).
  • I would use ESD to build a network of housing that is publicly-owned, publicly-financed, and publicly-built. Housing under this new approach would be democratically controlled — through cooperatives or tenant unions — and not developers.
  • I would fight for improved oversight, transparency, and work closely with federal partners to finally upgrade New York’s public housing.
  • Have you or anyone close to you (relation, friend, etc) been evicted or been threatened with eviction?
    Yes
  • Have you ever had to fight a landlord for repairs or faced harassment?
    No
  • Do you believe that housing should be de-commodified?
    Yes
    • Please explain your answer (500 characters)       
      As Lt. Governor, I would work to use Empire State Development (ESD) to build a network of housing that is publicly-owned, publicly-financed, and publicly-built. Housing under this new approach would be democratically controlled — through cooperatives or tenant unions — and not developers. In essence, we will create a public option for housing that serves a social purpose, instead of development that just feeds private markets. This would include:
    • – At least 20,000 new units will be set aside as supportive housing for those experiencing homelessness, substance use, or mental health struggles, or those returning home from incarceration
    • – Ensuring public land belongs to New Yorkers and will be used for public benefit, not for private profiteering. We will partner with nonprofits and qualified housing operators to ensure that our public land produces housing that is permanently affordable and used for the social good.
  • Do you believe in publicly owned and controlled housing?
    Yes
  • What is one rent and/or eviction protection you would enact if you had the opportunity?   (500 characters)
    It is past time to pass common sense Good Cause eviction legislation to prevent unfair, no-cause evictions and ban unconscionable rent increases that put New Yorkers at increased risk of losing their homes. This legislation would provide much-needed protections to renters against predatory private equity landlords making a quick buck off of an eviction for profit model.
  • Do you agree that all evictions are bad?
    Yes
    • If no, why not?   (500 characters)
  • Do you support the concept of universal rent control?
    Yes

Overview on Housing

  • Do you support the NYCHA 2.0 Rental Assistance Demonstration (RAD) and other privatization schemes?
    No
    • Please explain why or why not (250 characters)
      I am concerned about moving in the direction of privatization of NYCHA housing. That said, I do understand the frustration of NYCHA residents with City, State, and federal leaders who have neglected NYCHA.
  • NYCHA has suffered from chronic underfunding, neglect, and disrepair. What do you see as the best strategies to rectify these problems?             (500 characters)            
    New York has neglected public housing for far too long and its residents, our neighbors, and our communities deserve better. We must prioritize and dramatically upgrade New York’s public housing infrastructure while ensuring management is held accountable. I will prioritize improving oversight and transparency of entities like NYCHA & work closely with federal and local partners to realize a Green New Deal for Public Housing. It’s time to update New York’s public housing for the 21st century.
  • Do you support setting aside 15% of all units created in new state-subsidized affordable housing projects for homeless families and individuals?
    Yes
  • How would you use your office to put pressure on landlords to make repairs and stop harassing tenants?  (500 characters)
    While Lt. Governor doesn’t have a formal role in this, I envision the role as being akin to the Public Advocate of NYC, which has published “worst landlord” lists and applied pressure on delinquent landlords. I would work with state elected officials and community partners to shine a light on abuse of tenants, pressure relevant agencies to take action, and support pro-tenant legislation.
  • Do you support regulating the 300,000 deregulated rent-stabilized apartments?
    Yes
  • Will you support increased funding and oversight hearings of DHCR’s Office of Rent Administration to ensure timely responses?
    Yes
  • How will you ensure people who owe back rent due to COVID are not evicted and do not continue to owe money?   (500 characters)
    While I believe that the federal government should provide more federal resources to help tenants cover arrears, I strongly support the state investing in additional ERAP funding to ensure tenants can catch up and are not evicted. A Williams/Archila administration also would’ve extended it the eviction moratorium
  • Also, re the question below: I support stiffer financial penalties. I’d want to know more about the criminal penalties–some measures may fuel more criminalization and incarceration.
  • Would you support financial and criminal penalties against landlords and brokers that deny a prospective tenant housing based on using a tenant blacklist?
    Yes

Current Bills and Campaigns

  • Do you support Good Cause Eviction Protections?
    Yes
  • If Good Cause is not passed this session, what will you do to ensure it gets passed in 2023?  (500 characters)
    I am deeply committed to partnering with Met Council, HJ4A, and partners on a strong statewide campaign to make sure it passes. This would include partnering with progressive legislators and using the bully pulpit of the Lt. Gov’s office to advance it.
  • Will you support ending MCIs?
    Yes
  • Will you commit to fully funding the Housing Access Voucher Program?
    Yes
  • Do you support the Tenant Opportunity to Purchase Act (TOPA)?
    Yes
  • How will you support tenants in your district opting into TOPA?  (500 characters)
    As Lt. Governor, it is a priority to extend and expand New Yorker’s rights in their homes. This includes a focus on democratically controlled housing through empowering tenant unions. In supporting the Tenant Opportunity to Purchase Act, we are protecting the rights of the tenants and ensuring that our public land and housing stock are controlled by us: the public. We will fight to expand and make universal the right to counsel for tenants in housing court across the state.
  • Do you support the move to legalize basement apartments and ADUs?
    Yes
  • Do you support tenants’ right to collective bargaining?
    Yes
  • Do you support 421a or Gov Hochul’s proposed 485w?
    No
  • Do you support fully funding the Excluded Workers fund?
    Yes
  • Do you support the “Excluded No More” bill?
    Yes
  • Are you committed to making sure every tenant in the state has free access to counsel in Housing Court?
    Yes
  • Will you commit to fully funding statewide Right to Counsel in 2023’s budget?
    Yes