Wilfredo Florentino

Wilfredo Florentino

https://wilfredoflorentino.com/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/WILFREDOBKLYN Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/teamwilfredoflorentino

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 voted against the ENY rezoning, which passed at the Council. Consequently, our community is experiencing historic displacement. I have been involved w/the CLT movement in ENY, advocating for policies that maintain and equitably distribute land ensuring it remains deeply affordable. ENY was granted the first Cease and Desist Zone in Brooklyn. Our campaign wrote an op-ed in support of the zone, collected petitions and mobilized our community around this racist, anti-speculation tool.

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 council must fight to protect public housing and increased federal housing vouchers, which have been proven to be successful in reducing homelessness. Everyone has the right to shelter and housing should be considered a human right. We must commit to moving long-term street homeless individuals, many who live with mental illness, substance abuse disorders and health problems, into subsidized housing connecting them to support services.

9. Do you believe that housing should be de-commodified?  The council must fight to protect public housing and increased federal housing vouchers, which have been proven to be successful in reducing homelessness. Everyone has the right to shelter and housing should be considered a human right. We must commit to moving long-term street homeless individuals, many who live with mental illness, substance abuse disorders and health problems, into subsidized housing connecting them to support services.

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 was quoted in a Kings County Politics Article in December, “Florentino instead shifted to the Public Housing Emergency Response Act, which is a  bill that U.S. Rep. Nydia Velazquez (D-Brooklyn, Queens, Lower Manhattan) sponsored that allocates $70 billion for public housing capital repairs and upgrades nationally and $32 billion for NYCHA. ” https://www.kingscountypolitics.com/eny-city-council-candidate-florentino-charts-nabe-course/

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)

The ULURP process carves out community voice. Not ensuring that points of agreement (negotiated and led by community) are binding ensures that projects have no local hiring commitment or that housing is affordable to the community. 
Rezonings are about race, and a Racial Impact Study (RIS) to include impact on housing, transportation, schools, and healthcare must be part of the environmental review process required for rezonings citywide.

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

(See above.)

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 10% Percentage of Unhoused New Yorkers  10%

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

I stood with my community in the vote against the racist East New York rezoning – however, the council member voted in support of the plan which passed and as a result our community is experiencing historic displacement. As a Council Member, I can speak from the perspective on serving on my community board during a rezoning battle, where the community’s will was usurped in place of negligible affordable housing and equity legislative initiatives.

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? YesYes

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)

Our campaign platform outlines a community engagement policy, which includes, establish district-wide working groups, resident councils, tenant/block, merchant’s and homeowners associations facilitating constant communication and community co-governance. Accordingly these bodies would be empowered to advocate for issues they may be experiencing like negligent landlords and the council office would make itself available to serve as partner.

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)

The placement of shelters has been an exceedingly racist policy in NYC. Everyone has the right to housing and the process by which shelters are located should be equitable. In comparison to other districts the 42nd District has a disproportionate share.

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)

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