Needless to say, the pandemic has been a challenging ride for landlords. The saga continues with a potential bright spot that would give NYC landlords eligibility for 10-years’ worth of property tax breaks.
Two new bills have been introduced by several New York politicians that focus on helping small businesses manage high rents during the pandemic. The biggest focus is on restaurants and bars that have been hit hard over the past five months.
The proposed plan recommends that New York State authorize New York City to be able to give 10-years’ worth of property tax breaks to landlords who are willing to agree on new lease terms with struggling business tenants. The plan would allow landlords to renegotiate lease terms to address unpaid back rent and limit future rent hikes.
The two new bills were proposed by NYC Council Members including Brad Lander, who represents parts of Brooklyn including Cobble Hill, Gowanus, and Park Slope, and Keith Powers, who represents Manhattan neighborhoods including the Upper East Side and Times Square, joined with state assembly member Yuh-Line Niou, who represents parts of lower Manhattan including Chinatown and the Lower East Side, and state senator Brian Kavanagh.
These bills are only the latest in several pieces of proposed local legislature that are seeking to push lawmakers into helping NYC’s struggling small businesses survive the pandemic. In July, Keith Powers introduced a bill to abolish commercial rent tax in the city until the state of emergency has lifted. He also called for a bill to permanently implement an annual outdoor dining program that restaurants can rely on to boost sales. (We love outdoor dining!)
The bill focusing on commercial rent tax relief has been seeing support, and currently has seven sponsors.
We know it’s a tough time and hope that this legislation won’t be too late. Countless NYC restaurants have been permanently closing as the pandemic continues to see closed offices and residents leaving. Owners cite failed lease renegotiations as another part of the problem that leads to permanent closures for these small businesses.
We will keep you posted on these New York real estate issues, and of course, any issues related to eminent domain.