A local elected official, State Sen. Brian Kavanagh, has been appointed chair of the Senate’s Committee on Housing, Construction and Community Development. This means Kavanagh will be an influential voice as the Senate, under Democratic control for the first time in nearly a decade, makes a big push for stronger affordable housing protections.
Kavanagh was elected in 2017 to his post in the 26th Assembly District, which includes sections of Brooklyn and most of Lower Manhattan, including the Lower East Side. He previously served in the State Assembly. Among the top priorities for the newly empowered Democratic majority is ending vacancy decontrol and the vacancy bonus. There have also been calls for universal rent control.
“For the first time in many, many years,” Kavanagh told the Villager in a recent story, “we’re going to be able to have a serious conversation where we’re not being held hostage by Republicans that control the Senate and are dependent on the landlords to continue to keep the majority.”