Good morning. Here’s a look at opinion content published Friday, Aug. 20, Saturday, Aug. 21, Sunday, Aug. 22 and today, Monday, Aug. 23:
Friday, Aug. 20
Source-of-income legislation: Editorial
We comment on news that Gov. David Paterson vetoed legislation that would have made it illegal for landlords to discriminate against potential tenants based on their source of income. We write:
Those battered by the sour New York economy, including the poor and elderly, disabled veterans and others who receive income or benefits from government sources, won’t be getting any extra help from Albany when it comes to preserving or expanding their housing opportunities. Gov. David Paterson, while apparently moved by their plight, wasn’t moved enough to stand up on their behalf.
Citing potential economic harm to small landlords and high implementation costs, Paterson has vetoed legislation barring discrimination against housing applicants based on the source of their income — be it from employment, child support, alimony, Social Security and disability benefits, or Section 8 housing vouchers. The legislation easily passed the Assembly, 136-4, and the Senate, 34-27, but died on Paterson’s desk. He also chafed over the cost to taxpayers, estimated at $2.7 million — for staff to process anticipated complaints. Violators faced fines up to $100,000.
Proponents, including advocates for people with disabilities, veterans and fair housing practices, lobbied hard for the protections, citing private and government studies showing that source-of-income discrimination unfairly limits housing choices, perpetuates segregated housing patterns, contributes to homelessness, and sometimes serves as a proxy for racial discrimination. Before New York City adopted such a ban two years ago, 90 percent of landlords refused to accept Section 8 applicants — even those with stellar credit and renting histories. …
Saturday, Aug. 21
Two writers offered their views on the proposed minor-league ballpark in Ramapo:
Stadium will boost Ramapo: Commentary
Ken Lehner, a member of the ownership team and will manage operations of the independent minor league team that will play at the proposed Ramapo stadium, argues in favor of the plan.
Ramapo has better uses for its money: Commentary
Bruce Levine, former chairman of the Rockland County Legislature and Ramapo supervisor candidate in 2009, argues against the wisdom of building a ballpark.
Sunday, Aug. 22
Affordable housing: Commentary
Craig Gurian, executive director of the nonprofit Anti-Discrimination Center of Metro New York, offers a commentary on Westchester County officials’ reaction to the high-profile affordable housing settlement.
Monday, Aug. 23
Ramapo stadium: Editorial
We endorse plans to construct a minor-league ballpark in Ramapo, financing for which will be decided by voters Tuesday. We write:
Ramapo voters on Tuesday decide whether to guarantee repayment of $16.5 million in bonds to finance a new baseball stadium near the county’s Fire Training Center. The project has been controversial from the start, but has many important economic, recreational and entertainment attributes — such that it warrants their support. The baseball venture should benefit the entire region.
The stadium would be home to an independent team in the Can-Am League. The town would share in revenue from ticket sales, parking and concessions, in addition to receiving $175,000 a year for the team’s 20-year lease of the stadium. The facility would also be available for use by other teams and for other sports. The venue would also host concerts, car shows and other revenue-generating events. …