Comptroller’s audit found that Buildings generally implemented adequate controls over construction permit applications, but issued three recommendations to ensure public safety. On June 17, 2016, the Officer of the Comptroller Scott Stringer released a report of an audit conducted on the Department of Buildings’ processing of construction permits. The audit determined that Buildings’ controls for the processing of application were implemented consistently, that there were appropriate separation of duties, and an adequate application tracking system. Furthermore, Buildings verifies the current licensing of architects and engineers associated with applications.
The legislation, which is the first of its kind in the Nation, represents New York’s newest tool in its battle with Airbnb. On June 17, 2016, the New York State Legislature passed the first state bill in the Nation to ban online advertisements for illegal apartment rentals. The bill, sponsored by Assembly Member Linda Rosenthal and Senator Andrew Lanza, seeks to protect the at-risk stock of the City’s affordable housing units, which are illegally rented most prominently through Airbnb. For CityLand’s previous coverage on the bill, click here.
The audit report finds that the Department of Finance’s incorrect classification of Queens properties as mixed-use properties resulted in lost revenue for the City. On June 10, 2016, the Office of the City Comptroller Scott Stringer released a report of an audit conducted by the Department of Finance. The audit sought to determine whether the Department of Finance used procedures to ensure that properties classified as mixed-use in Queens had been properly classified.
The new building would bring manufacturing-based jobs to an industrial district, which has shifted focus to nightlife-oriented buildings and activities in the past few decades. On June 14, 2016, the City Council Subcommittee on Zoning and Franchises held a public hearing on an application for a zoning text amendment to allow for industrial space to be built in an area zoned for community space and for a special permit to amend off-street parking requirements to allow for the inclusion of zoning docks. The application seeks to facilitate the development of a new mixed-use manufacturing and commercial building at 25 Kent Avenue, located in Brooklyn’s Williamsburg neighborhood.
The modified version requires a full public review process in order to infill the largest arcades covered by the proposed zoning text amendment. On June 15, 2016, the City Council Committee on Land Use voted unanimously to approve a modified version of an application submitted by the Alliance for Downtown New York, the NYC Economic Development Corporation, and the Department of City Planning to rezone the privately owned public space—colloquially known as “POPS”—on and surrounding Water Street, located on the east side of lower Manhattan. The modified proposal requires the Alliance for Downtown New York to commit to providing programming on the public plazas, re-instates public review as a requirement to infill the larger buildings affected by the rezoning, and places further restrictions on the infill of the arcades.