Housing advocates call on governor to sign ‘1st Offer’ bill

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BROOKLYN -

Advocates rallied Thursday to call on Gov. Andrew Cuomo to sign a bill that would give public housing tenants with mobility issues priority for lower-floor vacancies.

They say it could save lives.

The so-called First Offer for the Vulnerable bill would ensure that tenants with mobility disabilities would get the first offer when a vacancy opens up on a lower floor, allowing them to live dramatically closer to the fire exit.

The bill passed unanimously in the state Senate and by a 3 to 1 margin in the Assembly.

The main obstacle for the bill is an added cost. Some apartments above the third floor might have to undergo expensive retrofitting. Advocates say that's a small price to pay when the result may mean the difference between life and death.

The governor's office did not immediately respond to a News 12 request for comment.

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