Even the City Must Pay Its Slumlords

The mayor has discovered what we’ve known all along: There’s no stopping slumlords. 

Michael Bloomberg doesn’t like paying millions of dollars in rent to landlords who have thousands of unaddressed housing violations. But he says the law makes him do it. 

The Observer kvetched yesterday about David Bistricer, a Brooklyn landlord who’s trying to toss infirm seniors for partying in his hallways. But the best twist is that the city reportedly pays the so-called slumlord more than $10 million in rent each year — including on one of his properties, the Kings County Housing Court. 

Now the mayor says he doesn’t think he can cancel the contracts the city already has with major violators, like Mr. Bistricer. “As an enforcement tool … it would be useful,” Mr. Bloomberg told the Daily News, but he said the issue is complicated by landlords’ use of multiple corporate entities and by lease agreements.

Welcome to being a tenant in New York City.

lkusisto@observer.com  Even the City Must Pay Its Slumlords