While aggressive evictions are reducing the number of rent-stabilized apartments in New York, Representative Charles B. Rangel enjoys 4 of them, including 3 adjacent units on the 16th floor overlooking Upper Manhattan in a building owned by one of New York’s premier real estate developers.
Democrat Mr. Rangel who is chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, uses his fourth apartment, six floors below, as a campaign office, despite state and city regulations that require rent-stabilized apartments to be used as a primary residence.
Mr. Rangel, who has a net worth of $566,000 to $1.2 million, according to Congressional disclosure records, paid a total rent of $3,894 monthly in 2007 for the four apartments at Lenox Terrace, a 1,700-unit luxury development of six towers, with doormen, that is described in real estate publications as Harlem’s most prestigious address.
The current market-rate rent for similar apartments in Mr. Rangel’s building would total $7,465 to $8,125 a month, according to the Web site of the owner, the Olnick Organization.
Leonard Steinberg, head of LUXURYLOFT team and publisher of the monthly newsletter LUXURYLETTER says: “How on earth does New York continue to allow the abusers of rent control laws to persist, especially an elected official, especially someone this powerful? Democrat or Republican, we should all stand up to this abuse. We all pay for this after all. New York rent control laws are like ANIMAL FARM: We are all equal but some are more equal than others?”