HPD Takes Enforcement Action Against 250 Troubled NYC Buildings

HPD Commissioner Maria Torres-Springer recently announced that 250 apartment buildings have been placed in HPD’s Alternative Enforcement Program (AEP). The added buildings each have enough Housing Maintenance Code violations to allow for enhanced enforcement by HPD, which may include roof-to-cellar inspections, fees, and an AEP Order to Correct underlying conditions and bring the buildings up to code.

This is the 12th year of the AEP program, and this round’s 250 buildings have a combined total of 37,164 housing code violations. Since AEP’s inception, 1,946 buildings with 26,085 apartments have been repaired, and more than $85 million in repair costs have been recovered by HPD.

Number of Buildings/Homes per Borough in AEP Round 12:

  • Manhattan: 50 buildings/1,059 homes
  • Bronx: 58 buildings/1,600 homes
  • Brooklyn: 129 buildings/1,751 homes
  • Queens: 12 buildings/184 homes
  • Staten Island: 1 building/6 homes

The 250 buildings in Round 12 have a total of 5,388 immediately hazardous (Class C) violations; 23,732 hazardous (Class B); and 8,044 non-hazardous (Class A). Immediately hazardous violations include mold, evidence of rodents, lead-based paint, and the lack of heat, hot water, or electricity. Class B hazardous violations include repair conditions, such as leaks or holes in plaster or drywall. Non-hazardous, or Class A violations, include chipping or peeling paint when no children under the age of 6 live in the home.

The Round 12 buildings already owe the city more than $1.3 million for HPD Emergency Repair Program charges. ERP charges accrue when repairs are done by HPD to correct immediately hazardous violations that the owner didn’t address in a timely manner.

The legislation establishing the program, the New York City Safe Housing Law (Local Law No. 29 of 2007), calls for an annual list of different multiple dwellings with high counts of the most serious building code violations based on a broad set of criteria, including paid or unpaid emergency repair charges. Additional financing from Mayor de Blasio and the New York City Council in 2014 allowed for an increase in the number of buildings in the annual round, from 200 to 250 buildings targeted a year.

To be discharged from the program, a building owner must demonstrate that conditions at the property have improved. This means correcting all violations associated with heat and hot water and all immediately hazardous violations; 80 percent of Class B mold violations; 80 percent of all violations related to vermin; 80 percent of all remaining B and C class violations; and correcting all related underlying conditions detailed in the AEP Order to Correct, if one has been issued. The owner must also submit a pest management plan to the NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene if there is an infestation, submit a valid property registration statement, and repay all outstanding charges and liens for emergency repair work performed by HPD or enter into a repayment agreement with the NYC Department of Finance.

FAQs for Building Owners on the Alternative Enforcement Program can be found by clicking here.