Measure targets deadbeat Brooklyn landlords

BROOKLYN - Landlords who rack up code violations at Brooklyn and other city buildings could get hit with repair costs if some City Council members have their way.

The council is considering the Safe Housing Act, which ensures repairs are completed in a timely manner. The measure targets landlords with at least 27 open code violations. The Department of Housing Preservation and Development would fix the problems if landlords don't complete the work within four months. Landlords would then get billed for repairs. They would have to repay the city or a lien would be placed on their property.

City Council Speaker Christine Quinn says the measure is enjoying an unprecedented amount of support from lawmakers, many landlords and especially tenants. "We live in the worst conditions. We have rats, worms, roaches, broken pipes, illegal construction ... everything," said tenant Jessica Marrero.

If the council approves the bill, the mayor would have to sign off on it. Officials estimate it would take five months to go into effect and is expected to cost the city $70 million over seven years.

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