Following a lengthy legal battle, a settlement has been reached with Parkchester South Condominium management over its ‘draconian’ maintenance fee increase.
On Thursday, January 5, Senator Ruben Diaz, Sr. and Assemblyman Luis Sepulveda announced a resolution to the months-long battle over a 15.19% maintenance fees increase at PSC to the delight of many condo owners during a town hall meeting at St. Paul’s Church gymnasium on 1891 McGraw Avenue.
During an extensive question and answer period, condo owners learned that unit owners who meet documented financial hardship requirements of 30 to 40% income levels would pay the maintenance increase over four years.
Senator Diaz has introduced a Bill of Rights for Condominium Owners (Senate Bill 510) which is being carried in the Assembly by Sepulveda.
The proposed legislation will allow unit owners to review or copy the IRS Form 990; approved meeting minutes; bank and financial statements; health, building code and safety inspection reports; accountant and consultant reports; bid proposals and expenditure receipts of a condominium .
PSC’s board would be required to suggest expense limits every five years and be prohibited from entering into contracts for any ‘extraordinary’ non-emergency expenses without the unit owners’ approval.
The attorney general would be authorized to enforce these provisions and may investigate allegations of any failure to comply.
Diaz appreciates all the legal work which prevented the eviction of any of the 8,286 unit owners for failing to pay the increase.
“This will show Parkchester’s Board that the people are paying attention, that transparency matters and that the board will be held accountable,” expressed Diaz. “Assemblyman Sepulveda and I realize that condo owners who live in not-for-profit condos like the Parkchester South Condominiums need more protection.”
“We have shown the Parkchester board of directors that we will not stand idly by without protecting the rights of minority owners,” said Sepulveda. “This is only a first step in having our sway over our rights. We will be heard!”
As previously reported, PSC explained the 15.19% temporary maintenance fee hike was necessary to address wide-spread water infiltration and damage to the buildings’ roof slabs which required immediate attention.
If not, this would lead to ceiling collapses resulting in potential injuries, owner displacement and units in a state of disrepair rendering them unsellable.
Once work is completed by year’s end, PSC’s board intends to revert the maintenance fees back to 2015 levels of 2.5%.
PSC informed condo owners in a letter from Thursday, December 15 that there will be no common charge increase in 2017.
PSC has since completed 50% of inspections and hopes to complete all inspections by the end of the year.
The board is currently reviewing several projects, including modernizing 143 elevators, security emergency call stations around the property, upgrading intercoms and heating system efficiencies among others.
PSC has begun posting common charge updates on its website, www.parkc
Condo owners with any questions or concerns are asked to contact PSC’s management offices at (718) 320-6000.