Mid-November 2019 “News & Update” 

1) Westchester County Board of Legislators (W-BOL) Public Hearing 

The Westchester County Board of Legislators (W-BOL) is holding their first 2020 Budget Hearing in Mount Vernon’s Doles Center on Tuesday, November 19 (see enclosed WBOL Hearing Flyer, repeated in the section below.

It’s important that tenants come to the Public Hearing in support of Mt. Vernon United Tenants (MVUT). Westchester dollars that go to MVUT are probably the most cost-effective investment that the County makes. MVUT stops over one hundred and fifty (150) evictions every year. We save the county oodles of money by keeping people out of the extremely expensive (over $4,000 a month) emergency shelter system. To be cost effective at the amount the W-BOL has normally provided us ($25,000.00) we’d only have to stop one (1) eviction a year. The reality is that not every family whose eviction we prevent would end up in the emergency shelter system but surely at least

10% would. You can do the math yourself. The savings are immense. Tell the W-BOL – “Invest in MVUT and help Westchester County save more money, and help keep people in their permanent homes!”   We’re also asking the W-BOL to fund a “Grassroots Educational Campaign” to educate tenants about their newly-won rights from this past legislative session in which MVUT played a key role. Come to this Public Hearing, testify for MVUT, and help us become even more effective! 

More info on: Westchester County Board Of Legislators (W-BOL) Public Hearing about the 2020 County Budget 

Date: Tuesday November 19
Time: 7:00 pm (6:15pm sign-up to speak time)
Place: The Doles Center
250 South 6th Avenue

MVUT relies upon the W-BOL to support our program efforts. Lyndon Williams is the County Legislator who represents Mt. Vernon on the W BOL. It’ important for Lyndon and all of the other sixteen (16) members of the W-BOL to hear from MVUT members and friends about the effectiveness of our program efforts, e.g. preventing evictions and keeping people in their permanent apartments, helping re-house homeless people and tenants at-risk of homelessness; fighting for improved services and more affordable rents; organizing tenants and teaching them their rights – this is especially important as the state legislature passed a whole bunch of great improvements in the state rent laws this spring but most tenants are unaware of those improvements. MVUT should be funded to do a “Grassroots Education Campaign” to educate tenants about their newly won rights. As the saying goes “these rights aren’t worth the paper they’re written on if people don’t know about them.” MVUT is committed to do just that – educate all rent stabilized tenants! Our ask to the W-BOL: 

1) Continue funding our successful Homelessness Prevention Program (HPP) $25,000 – $35,000 

2) Fund MVUT’S grassroots educational campaign re: the new and improved State Rent Laws (approx. $50,000) 

We’d like many tenants to come and speak on behalf of MVUT, i.e. how effective our programs are, and the need for increased funding to help MVUT serve even more tenants – not only in Mt. Vernon, but throughout  the county.   Call the MVUT Office (914) 699-1114 x303 with any questions or to discuss your testimony. 

2) CENSUS 2020 

MVUT continues its work on both the Mt. Vernon and Westchester County “Complete Count Committees”. As we previously told you the 2020 Census will allocate $675 BILLION!! We must make sure that Mt. Vernon and Westchester get their “Fair Share”, i.e. we must make sure that every resident gets counted! We just met with the Mount Vernon Complete Count Committee on Tuesday, November 12 and we’ll be meeting with the Westchester Complete Count Committee on Thursday, November 14.

Things will get real busy as we move into the new year. Lots of good people are engaged in this campaign and we’re asking all of our members and friends to encourage everyone they know to help identify “Hard to Reach” residents and let them know that there is nothing to fear from participating in the Census. We’re enclosing a United States Census 2020 two-sided flyer “How the 2020 Census will invite everyone to respond”!

3) Holiday Gathering MVUT  – Friday, December 6th at 6:30 PM

MVUT will hold its annual “Holiday Gathering” on Friday December 6 at 6:30 pm in our office at 2 Gramatan Avenue. Everyone is welcome and we ask that people bring a dish to share that evening or make a donation to MVUT to help defray the cost. We’ll have a flyer in the next mailing.

4) Neighborhood Preservation Coalition (NPC) “Legislative Breakfast” 

MVUT annually organizes a “LEGISLATIVE BREAKFAST”” for the six (6) Neighborhood Preservation Companies (NPCS) in Westchester who receive funding under the State Neighborhood Preservation Coalition. We normally hold the Breakfast in one of Westhab’s new buildings for low to moderate income tenants. We invite all of the State Legislators (Senators and Assemblymembers) who represent areas in Westchester. This is the beginning of the State Budget Process and we work to educate our State Legislators about the value that all of the sex (6) groups bring to their respective neighborhoods.


5) Know Your Rights: New Rent Laws   (Download Know Your Right Event Flyer)

In June 2019, New York State enacted legislation establishing the strongest protections for renters in at least a generation. At this forum you will learn about these laws and get answers to your questions. 

Tuesday, November 26, 2019 from 6:00 to 7:30 p.m.
New Rochelle Public Library
One Library Plaza
New Rochelle, NY 

Presenters: Jill Bradshaw-Soto, Esq., Attorney-in-Charge of LSHV Mt. Vernon Office Michelle Avery, Esq., Staff Attorney 

RSVP to ESantiago [at] LSHV.org or call (914) 813-6881 

On site Intake opportunities.
Light refreshments and snacks will be available. 

Legal Services of the Hudson Valley
Protecting Rights- Promoting Justice 

Support Tenants Rights! 

Support Affordable Housing!! 

Support MVUT!!! 

Mt.  Vernon United Tenants, Inc.
Mail: P. O. Box 2107
Office: 2 Gramatan Avenue – Suite 304
Mt Vernon, N. Y. 10551 

Phone (914) 699-1114 – Fax (914) 699-7449
Email: mvut [at] erols.com
Website: www.mvut.org 

Download Mid-Nov 2019 News and Update

Mid-October 2019 “News & Update’ 

Download Mid-October 2019 News and Update   and October Flyers

MVUT Annual Meeting 

At our Annual Meeting three (3) Board members, Deborah Ramsey, Georgia McDowell and Deborah Carter Jenkins, all were re-elected for three (3) year terms. We also reviewed the past year’s program successes – most especially the incredible improvements in the state’s tenant protections with the passing of the Housing Stability and Tenant Protection Act of 2019. This legislation is the best thing that has happened for tenants in generations. There will be a public meeting describing the various improvements at the Wartburg on October 22 (see copy of flyer enclosed). We also discussed upcoming campaigns for the next year including MVUT’s role in MOUNT VERNON RISE, a new State Legislative Campaign, Census 2020 and the upcoming County Budget.


CENSUS 2020 

This will be a big focus for MVUT over the next seven (7) to eight (8) months. It’s incredibly important that Mt. Vernon makes a big effort to get a “Complete Count” in the census. The U.S. must do a census every ten (10) years. The results of the CENSUS are dramatic. It determines the level of political representation, i.e. how many people represent us in Congress, and even the level of representation in the State Legislature. But maybe even more important is the allocation of federal dollars – $675 Billion. In 2010 Mt. Vernon was victimized by a serious undercount. The 2010 “count was just over 67,000. Most people believe we have well over 80,000 residents, maybe even 90,000! The estimate is that Mt. Vernon lost nearly $400 Million!! Can you imagine what we could have done with that money? MVUT is working with both the Mt. Vernon “Complete Count” Committee and the Westchester “Complete Count” Committee to try to get every Mt.Vernon resident counted. We’ll be sending you information on this on a regular basis – in this mailing we’re sending you two (2) flyers

1) Why We Aşk
2) Westchester New York 2020 Census Jobs 

If you’d like to get involved with the Census 2020 Campaign call the MVUT office at (914) 699-1114. 

Mt. Vernon RISE 

MVUT has been working with Mt. Vernon RISE to improve Mt. Vernon’s code enforcement effectiveness and the quality of life throughout the city. At the last City Council Meeting on October 9, MVUT staff and board members called specifically for four (4) additional code enforcement officers to be hired both by funds received through RISE and with local tax dollars. The three (3) council members in attendance -Acting President Janice Duarte, Marcus Griffith and Lisa Copeland all acknowledged the need for more code enforcement officers. We’ll have to keep up the pressure as we get into the City’s budget process. Tenants should call and write to all of the council members in support of these additions! 

Lead Safe Westchester (LSW) 

Lead in our older buildings poses a serious health threat risk to our community, especially our young (under 6 years of age) children. Westchester County has a significant amount of money from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to start to address this ongoing threat. We’re enclosing a two (2) sided flyer describing the process, eligibility and contact information. Reach out to your landlords and encourage them to participate. Do it for our kids! 


Westchester County Budget 

MVUT needs Westchester to financially support our progress. Most especially, MVUT provides incredible eviction prevention services (we stop approximately one hundred fifty (150 ) evictions every year). The savings to the County is in the millions of dollars in reduced emergency shelter costs. The benefits to those tenants who avoid eviction are incalculable! We’ll also be asking for the Westchester Board of Legislators (W-BOL) to fund MVUT to do an educational campaign on the new and improved rent laws. While the improvements gained under the Housing Stability and Tenant Protection Act of 2019 are incredibly significant, if tenants don’t know about them and how to utilize them, “they’re not worth the paper they’re written on”.  As the only funded and staffed tenants’ association in Westchester, and with over twenty-five thousand (25,000+) tenant households in the county covered by the law. 

MVUT is perfectly positioned to run such a campaign. The first County Budget Hearing will be held in Mt. Vernon at the Doles Center, 250 South 6th Avenue, on Tuesday November 19 at 7:00 P.M. Mark your calendar! We’re asking our members to come to this Hearing in support of increased funding for MVUT, and if they’d like to, to speak in favor of same. We’ll have a flyer for this in an upcoming mailing. Call the MVUT office if you can participate. 

Next MVUT Membership Meeting will be on Monday November 4, at 7:00 PM..   Tuesday November 5 is Election Day and we don’t want to inhibit anyone from voting that day.    The meeting will be held at our office at 2 Gramatan Avenue, Room 312.


Upcoming Events: 

Saturday October 19: 

The State of Black Women and Girls in Westchester County (see flyer enclosed on reverse side of the Information on NY State’s New Rent Laws) 

Tuesday October 22: 

Information on New York State New Rent Laws (see above) 

Monday November 4, 7:00 PM 

MVUT General Membership Meeting
2 Gramatan Avenue, Room 312
Mt Vernon, NY  

Tuesday November 5 

Election Day-VOTE! 

Tuesday November 19, 7:00 PM 

W-BOL Public Hearing Doles Center
250 South 6th Avenue
Mt. Vernon, NY   


Support Tenants Rights! 

Support Affordable Housing!! 

Support MVUT!!! 


Download Mid-October 2019 News and Update   and October Flyers

Mount Vernon “RISE” (Report-Inspect-Service-Enhance) Survey

Download Mt Vernon RISE Survey Form


Mount Vernon “RISE” (Report-Inspect-Service-Enhance) 

MVUT has been working with the Mt. Vernon Dept. of Planning and Community Development (MV-PCD) and various organizations and activists on RISE to improve the “Quality of Life” throughout Mount Vernon.

We’re setting up tenant meetings throughout the city and we’re distributing and collecting “Quality of Life Surveys.”

Please fill out the Survey and get it back to MVUT by either dropping it off at our office; mailing it back to us at PO Box 2107, Mt. Vernon, NY 10551; faxing it to us at (914) 699-7449; or emailing it to us at mvut [@] erols.com.

We’re in contract with MV-PCD so it’s important that we collect as many of these “Quality of Life Surveys” as possible.

Thanks for your help! Working together we can all make Mount Vernon a better place to live and work in!!