[Image via Streeteasy]
Via the EVG inbox...
Tenants of 118 East 4th Street in the East Village appear back in Manhattan Housing Court on Thursday March 3rd at 9:30 AM as part of ongoing litigation against their landlord, Jared Kushner. Tenants are calling for the immediate restoration of essential services and for living conditions to be rectified.
The tenants have recently endured bouts of no heat, mounding trash, and have been without cooking gas since October 2015. Con Ed shut down all gas for the building and Jared Kushner has yet to take the necessary procedures with the city to restore it. This comes on top of the landlord’s failure to repair a multitude of potentially dangerous conditions in the building, including:
• No cooking gas
• Collapsed ceilings
• Questionably safe electrical systems
• Mounding trash
• Deprivation of heat
• Apartments entered without notice
• Blocked mail delivery
The tenants filed an HP Action for repairs and services in January to seek a remedy for these unsafe conditions. The landlord received a default judgement at the first court appearance on February 4th as Kushner failed to appear in court to address matters – a sign the tenants interpret as further disregard for the issues they face. At the time of a previous court appearance, the building had a total of 17 open violations with the Department of Housing Preservation and Development, including 4 considered “immediately hazardous.” The current violation count is now 35 in total with 8 class “C” immediately hazardous violations. A motion was recently filed in court to hold Kushner in contempt of court due to the lack of restoration of services.
You can read the whole notice at the Cooper Square Committee website. The news advisory includes quotes from Manhattan Borough President Gale A. Brewer, State Sen. Brad Hoylman and Councilwoman Rosie Mendez.
It hasn't been easy at 118-120 E. Fourth St. through the years. Ben Shaoul's Magnum Management, in partnership with Meadow Partners, bought the buildings in late 2010. Fortune East LLC reportedly managed the buildings. The blog Occupy East Fourth Street had been documenting renovation horror stories. (Like this one.)
Kushner bought the buildings during his East Village land grab in February 2013.
Occupy East Fourth Street continues documenting the situation inside No. 118. Here's a post from Feb. 14:
Woke up this morning to 7 degrees, its now 14 degrees outside, and no heat at 118 East St. Through some communications with the other tenants, it seems the heat is on in one line of the building. That line contains the market rate tenants. There are 2 other heat lines that are off and those lines contain the majority of rent stabilized tenants, including some senior citizens in fragile health. I think one or two market rate folks are getting the frozen treatment if they are unfortunate enough to reside above or below a rent stabilized tenant. Calls to the Westminster office provide no results as usual. There seems to be a Westminster person living in 118 at the moment. A call put into him goes unanswered and he has no voice mail set up on his phone. The same goes for the "Super". No answer. No voice mail set up on phone.