A recent follow-up audit of the Office of Rent Administration (ORA) under the Homes and Community Renewal umbrella evaluated the progress made concerning fines related to tenant complaints.
ORA, which oversees nearly 1 million regulated apartments in New York State, handles harassment and non-compliance complaints from both owners and tenants.
Harassment cases are primarily focused on instances where tenants feel forced out of their apartments, while non-compliance pertains to landlords failing to take corrective actions based on previous rulings.
In cases of confirmed violations, landlords may face substantial fines ranging from $1,000 for first-time non-compliance offenses to $2,000 for initial harassment offenses.
This assessment is a continuation of a December 2019 audit that flagged ORA for lacking strong fiscal controls over fines and settlements, resulting in potential revenue losses for the State. The recent report indicates that of the initial six recommendations, three have been fully executed, one has seen partial implementation, while two remain untouched.
The ORA is now prompted to share their strategy for addressing these outstanding concerns within the coming 30 days.
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