New York launches probe into allegations of Kushner Cos. harassing tenants

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The announcement by the Democratic governor comes after tenants on the Austin Nichols Home on Kent Avenue in Williamsburg filed a lawsuit and stated the corporate began main building that launched harmful toxins within the air. They cost that the constructing was unlivable for tenants, with extreme noise and vermin working rampant, officers stated.

“Governor Cuomo has zero tolerance for tenant abuse of any sort and we are going to aggressively tackle landlords who attempt to intimidate individuals out of their houses,” stated New York State Houses and Neighborhood Renewal Commissioner RuthAnne Visnauskas.

Twenty present and former tenants of the property filed a lawsuit Monday looking for $10 million in punitive damages plus no matter a jury decides for compensatory damages.

“To bypass New York Metropolis hire regulation legal guidelines it seems Kushner Firms commenced a deliberate marketing campaign to systemically harass tenants out of their residences utilizing unlawful and unsafe building practices,” stated Aaron Carr, head of the nonprofit watchdog Housing Rights Initiative that was individually investigating the matter.

Building on the location started in April of 2016.

Tenants reached out to Housing Rights Initiative in regards to the Kushner Firms building round June of 2017, Carr stated. They performed their very own information evaluation and decided that there was widespread lead, lung carcinogens and different toxic cancer-causing supplies, Carr stated.

Then in April of 2018, lawyer Jack Lester began working with tenants in hopes of submitting the lawsuit. Lester stated the cancerous particles have been nonetheless current within the constructing, and in some residences, greater than a yr after building stopped.

“The tenants have been enduring the circumstances,” stated Lester of the residents when the development began. “These have been those who had simply arrived in New York Metropolis, had simply moved right here and I suppose they felt one of the simplest ways to deal with this was to only transfer out.”

In an announcement, a spokesman for Kushner Firms stated the lawsuit is “completely with out benefit” and that residents “have been totally knowledgeable in regards to the deliberate renovation and all work was accomplished below the total supervision by the New York Metropolis Division of Buildings and different regulatory companies, with full permits and with no violations for these claims.”

The Kushner Firms spokesman additionally stated, “Tenants have been by no means pressured to depart their residences and the market-rate hire stabilization was — and continues to be — complied with below relevant hire tips. Any complaints throughout building (which was accomplished in 2017) have been evaluated and addressed promptly by the property administration crew. The property administration crew is dedicated to persevering with to fulfill the wants of all residents.”

This story is breaking and shall be up to date.



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