Articles from February 2012

TUES, 3/6 >> Affordable Housing Lobby Day in Albany!

Get on the Bus!!  

Tuesday, March 6 is the Neighborhood Preservation Coalition of New York State (NPC of NYS) Legislative Awareness Day in Albany.

Support local Neighborhood Preservation Companies (NPCs) efforts to restore needed state housing funds.  Six Westchester NPCs (Mount Vernon United Tenants included!) and the The Preservation Company of Peekskill depend upon state funding to deliver housing and tenant services to low- and moderate-income residents.

Buses will leave from Mt. Vernon City Hall at 7:30 AM and then go to the County Center in White Plains at 8:15 AM.  Round trip bus fare is $25.00.  Call (914) 699-1114 to reserve a seat.  

Note: If you cannot afford the fare, we may be able to arrange for a scholarship.  Also, if you cannot go, please make a contribution to allow others to go who cannot afford the fare.

Neighborhood Preservation Letter – Sample letter to legislators — why funding for the NPC program needs to be restored, and the program’s impact in our local area

Contact Info for Area Legislators – Use these addresses to send letters to your legislator.




WED, 3/7 >> Hunger Action Network of NY State Lobby Day in Albany

Get on the Bus for a Higher Minimum Wage!!

Come to Albany on Wednesday March 7 for a statewide legislative action day with the Hunger Action Network of New York State (HANNYS).  HANNYS is a statewide anti-hunger coalition that combines grassroots organizing at the local level with state level research, education and advocacy to address the root causes of hunger, including poverty.

 Help Demand:

1. Restore the welfare grant hike
2. Raise the State Minimum Wage to $10 / hour
3. Pass Education Access Bill
4. Jobs – for low-income New Yorkers
5. Fair Taxes, Restore Human Service / Housing Funding
6. Close Corporate Tax Loopholes


The day starts at Westminster Presbyterian Church, 85 Chestnut St., Albanyat 9:30 AM with registration. A briefing at 10 AM, a rally / action at noon, and lobby visits from 1 to 3:30. We have buses / vans planned from NYC and Rochesterand hope to have some from Westchester. 

Call Dennis Hanratty at (914) 699-1114 ext. 303 if you’d like to attend.

Issues: restore the basic welfare grant hike; increase state minimum wage; access to education for welfare participants; jobs; and fair revenues / close corporate tax loopholes.   Flyer | Budget Overview

 Read January 2012 HANNYS Newsletter

2011 MVUT Achievements, and Current Priorities

Dear MVUT Supporter,

Thank you for your continuing support for Mount Vernon United Tenants.  2011 was a really tough year for us financially.  We’ve run a deficit all year long, as the County Executive took our critically needed eviction-prevention funding out of the County budget.  We need support from friends and members like you, as much as ever.

Despite the lack of funding, we’ve still done some incredible things:

— We were the lone non-NYC organizaiton in the Real Rent Reform (R3) campaign that got our state rent laws renewed and strengthened.  This is the first time in nearly twenty (20) years when the laws weren’t weakened!
— Stopped over 150 evictions!
— Successfully rehoused over twenty (20+) individuals/families!
— Helped organize eighteen (18) building tenant associations!
— Secured free, quality used furniture for over sixty (60) families!
— Participated in various coalitions (locally, countywide, regional, statewide) that resulted in improved public policy, most recently as a lead organizaiton on the local campaign for the extension of the “millionaire’s tax.”

We’re working hard right now on a number of fronts:

— As a lead organizer in the Hudson Valley Coalition for a Fair Economy.
— Fighting for restoration of funds in the Neighborhood Preservation Program (MVUT’s largest funding source).
— Participating with the R3 Campaign to strengthen the State’s Rent Laws.
— Working with the Westchester Non-Profit Housing Coalition to ensure Westchester County’s compliance with the historic “Settlement” for 750 “Fair and Affordable” units.
— Preparing for the upcoming (late Spring) Westchester Rent Guidelines Board Hearings.

We’re working non-stop to keep tenants’ hosuing safe, dignified and affordable!!

You have helped us to carry on this work.   Thank you!!  To do even more, we ask that you consider continuing to support us with a generous financial contribution.  Please encourage your neighbors to support us as well.


Dennis Hanratty
Executive Director

Click here for a PDF version of this letter.