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Community Development

The Community Development Policy Advocacy section contains Legislative Memos, Letters, Comments and Testimony. You will also find news items, articles and reports that relate to our policy work in Community Development.



Legislative Memos

Memorandum of Support: Amend Social Services Law § 106 to Protect the Homes of Welfare Recipients
New York is one of only two states in the nation that takes deeds and mortgages against the homes of welfare recipients to recover the public assistance paid to these homeowners. This bill would exempt persons who own and reside in one, two or three family homes from this archaic provision. If the goal of New York’s public assistance policy is to restore individuals to self-sufficiency, then it is time to pass this bill! Read More

New Yorkers for Resonsible Lending: NYS Needs Public Data to Help Identify Discrimination in the Homeowners Insurance Market
Evidence shows that insurers that write homeowners policies in New York fail to adequately serve communities of color. New Yorkers living in communities of color pay more for inferior insurance products and are more often denied private market coverage than those living in predominantly white neighborhoods. Read More

Legislative Memo: Help Protect Homeowners and Shorten the Foreclosure Process- Clarify Standing to Sue in Foreclosure Actions
This bill provides that only the owner and holder of a mortgage and note, or its agent, shall have standing to commence a mortgage foreclosure action. Read More

Empire Justice Memo on Federal Policy Recommendations to Help New York Homeowners
Subprime mortgage lending triggered the foreclosure crisis. Subsequent declines in the economy and in home values are increasing the risk of mortgage default and foreclosure. Following is a summary of the present outlook and most current proposed solutions taken from industry analysts, regulators, scholars and the media. Read More



Policy Letters

Empire Justice urges Governor to sign OCA "Shadow Docket" bill as soon as possible
The legislation helps homeowners, communities (many of the properties stuck in the shadow docket are believed to be vacant), New York’s court system and will hasten New York’s protracted foreclosure process. The Governor needs to sign it into law to prevent any more cases from ending up in "legal limbo." Read More



Empire Justice Comments to DFS on Vacant and Abandoned Properties
The proposed regulations for vacant and abandoned properties are quite comprehensive and thoughtfully address most of what needs to be included in the final regulations. Read More



Empire Justice Center Testimony for the 2017 Joint Legislative Budget Hearing on Housing
Empire Justice Center's testimony prepared for the 2017 Joint Legislative Budget Hearing on Housing. New York State must commit $30 million in funding for the Foreclosure Prevention Services Network to continue the great strides we've made in keeping New Yorkers in their homes. Read More



Policy Related News

Empire Justice Press Release: New York State Delivers a Tight Budget with Several Notable Wins for Low Income New Yorkers

Upon the finalization of the 2017-2018 state budget, Empire Justice Center was excited to announce that several of its legislative priorities were included, including a new $1 million investment that will allow the organization to dramatically increase the amount of assistance it can provide to immigrants in need of legal representation, as well as two notable policy changes. At the same time, other important programs and proposals sustained losses that will be acutely felt by hard working New Yorkers in the coming year, causing much concern Read More

Suffolk creates hotline for homeowners facing foreclosure (Newsday)

Suffolk County has established a new hotline connecting homeowners at risk of foreclosure with free housing counseling and legal services. Read More

More Policy Related News >>


Policy Related Articles

Protect New York Homes :
Funding for the Foreclosure Prevention Services Network ends on September 30, 2017. New York State is a national model for foreclosure prevention and community restoration because of its dedication to providing homeowners with a strong network of professional housing counselors and legal services attorneys. Read More

Empire Justice Center 2017 State Budget Priorities :
As New Yorkers, we unite around the concepts of liberty, equality and opportunity. In 2017, Empire Justice Center’s top priorities will be focused on identifying and fostering ways to strengthen New York’s laws, our communities, and each other, to protect justice for ALL New Yorkers. Read More


 Policy Related Reports

Know Your Rights: A Guide to Fighting Discrimination Against Transgender & Gender Non-Conforming New Yorkers Under the New York State Human Rights Law   Transgender and gender-nonconforming people in New York State are now clearly protected by our Human Rights Law (HRL), thanks to new regulations issued earlier this year. Our NEW GUIDE explains what gender identity-based discrimination might look like, and how to exercise your rights under the HRL.   Read More