Friday, November 10, 2006


image c/o **please repost** Benefit gig for 47 East 3rd Street fight against mass eviction FRIDAY 10th NOVEMBER, 8pm PENNYRIMBAUD and LOUISE ELLIOTT JAPANTHER plus Screening of CRASS film: YES SIR, I WILL at TONIC 107 Norfolk Street Admission: $10 There will be a raffle for two Crass litho prints signed by the artist to help raise funds for legal defense fees. Any donations appreciated. Donate to benefit at <> Use account: For more information on benefit go to: <> Or by check to: "47 East 3rd St. Tenants' Assoc." & Mail to: c/o David Pultz, 47 East 3rd St., #2, New York, NY 10003 PRESS RELEASE November 2006 NY State Supreme Court Sides With Tenants in Landmark NYC Mass Eviction Case-Landlords Appeal to Appellate Court The New York State Supreme Court has ruled against the family of a Columbia University dean attempting to evict every resident of a 15-unit rent-stabilized Manhattan tenement-to supposedly turn the entire tenement into a mansion for the dean's daughter. Kathryn B. Yatrakis is dean of academic affairs at Columbia College where she, ironically, teaches an Urban Studies course on economic and social problems in cities. Her husband, Peter Yatrakis, runs New York City real estate company Granite International Management, which manages more than two dozen City apartment buildings owned or co-owned by the family. The Yatrakises share their landmark five-story Cobble Hill brownstone home with their daughter and son-in-law, Catherine and Alistair Economakis. Alistair Economakis is the son of a Greek shipping magnate. Both Catherine and her husband are full-time operatives of Granite Management. By law, a landlord in need of a place to live may be permitted to refuse to renew a tenant's lease and acquire the apartment for the landlord's personal use. The mass eviction underway at 47 East 3rd Street-claiming an entire tenement for personal use-is unprecedented in New York City history. Catherine and Alistair Economakis claim there's not enough room for them and their baby at their family's brownstone and that they are evicting all the residents of 47 East 3rd Street to transform the 105-year-old six-story tenement into their private mansion. Their plans for the building include five bedrooms, six bathrooms, a gym with shower, a library, a suite for their nanny and a two-story living room with an overhanging walkway. The Economakis/Yatrakis family acquired 47 East 3rd Street in 2002 on the cheap by taking advantage of a City tax lien on the building. They then navigated the building through a bankruptcy proceeding, and then sold the building-for zero dollars-from a family-controlled company to themselves as individual owners. Only individual owners can use "owner occupancy" to evict tenants. Tenants at 47 East 3rd Street challenged their evictions in State Supreme Court, leading to Justice Faviola A. Soto's March 6, 2006, ruling-a permanent injunction against evicting all the tenants unless the landlords first get approval from DHCR (Division of Housing and Community Renewal). DHCR is the State agency with the authority to grant permission for the removal of a rent-stabilized building from the rental market. Tenants believe DHCR would be unlikely to approve the landlords' mass eviction scheme. The landlords had argued that DHCR approval is unnecessary for their plan, and rather than seek such approval they have filed to appeal the ruling. The case is expected to go to the State's highest court; the final ruling will be a landmark decision on tenant rights. The building's tenants have already collectively spent over $170,000 in legal fees and are fundraising for their legal defense fund. Congressman Jerrold Nadler comments, "The owner-occupancy provision was never intended to enable landlords to pursue such ruthless mass evictions. I commend and support the tireless efforts of the residents of 47 East 3rd Street to save their homes. This is not just their fight: a victory for them will be a victory for thousands of other rent regulated residents throughout the City who are also at risk of losing their homes." CONTACT: 47 East 3rd Street Tenants' Association 212-330-8783 Save The Tenement, Fight The Mansion! By contributing to the legal defense fund, you won't be just helping tenants defend their homes against mass eviction, you will allow them to fight on in the courts, where by winning this groundbreaking test case we will set a legal precedent protecting tenants Citywide! For more info: <> Online: <> to account mailto: By mail: checks to 47 East 3rd Street Tenants Association, c/o David Pultz, 47 East 3rd Street, #2, New York, NY 100003 Media Coverage Links: The New York Times: NY Daily News: The Villager:
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