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Independent report finds Poughkeepsie is eligible for rent stabilization


The Poughkeepsie Common Council unanimously approved putting up a public hearing to determine the future of the city's housing situation on Tuesday night.


The vote followed the release of an independent study that found Poughkeepsie is eligible to move forward with rent stabilization laws under New York's Emergency Tenant Protection Act.


The report found a 3.96% vacancy rate among residential buildings built before 1974 with six or more units.


A vacancy rate under 5% qualifies a municipality to declare a housing emergency under the ETPA, which was expanded in 2019 to cover all communities statewide.

Tenants at the meeting broadly and strongly supported any effort to bring down the cost of housing.


"As costs of living increase across the board Poughkeepsie is becoming a completely unlivable place to live something must be done to address this crisis," one tenant said.

Landlord groups are already planning to sue if the city moves forward.


One local landlord offered his take on the situation.


"The real solution is getting more supply, so I think all the other rents will go up if you opt into rent stabilization," he said.


Several council members expressed their support for rent stabilization efforts during their part of the meeting.


Other Hudson Valley municipalities have attempted to adopt rent stabilization laws, including Newburgh and Kingston. Earlier this year, a judge blocked Newburgh's efforts after several landlord groups claimed the data used to determine the vacancy rate was inaccurate. In March, a state appellate court backed Kingston's rent reduction efforts.


The public hearing to determine whether the city will declare a housing emergency will be on Tuesday, May 7 at 6 p.m.

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