Real Estate Board of New York
The board was formed in 1896 to "facilitate transactions in real estate, such as buying, selling, leasing, mortgaging, and insuring of property and other business pertaining thereto." As of 2017, Daniel Brodsky serves as one of the board of directors at REBNY. Brodsky received a masters degree in urban planning from New York University's Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service and a B.A. from the University of Pennsylvania. He majored in political science as an undergraduate.
Today, REBNY works to promote industry-backed policies. Its members frequently speak before government bodies to, among other things, "expand New York’s economy", encourage the development and renovation of commercial and residential real property, increase the city’s appeal to a specific class of investors and residents, and facilitate property management for this same class. To help members hone their professional skills, the group conducts professional education programs, including state-certified required courses for licensing, continuing education courses, and free seminars. The group also performs research on residential and commercial conditions within the city; it maintains the largest collection of real-estate related information of any city trade association in its Seymour B. Durst library at its midtown Manhattan office.
The group also backs political candidates deemed friendly to real estate companies. For the 2013 political races in Brooklyn, they created the Jobs for New York PAC, a pro-development political action committee to support controversial Brooklyn councilwoman Laurie Cumbo and other candidates. The PAC gave Cumbo at least $80,000 through August 2013, an unpopular move with residents in a rapidly gentrifying area. (In an AARP-sponsored discussion a week later, Cumbo claimed that she received no money from REBNY.)
In early 2015, REBNY represented the landlords of unsafe buildings in council member Margaret Chin's downtown district and pushed back when approached about having to pay to move tenants while the buildings were being fixed. REBNY president Steve Spinola said, "This legislation would better protect tenants by strengthening the existing (Department of Housing Preservation and Development) program to relocate tenants instead of cutting into funds used for building repairs and maintenance."
REBNY also started "Putting New Yorkers to Work, Inc.", a lobbying group that funding ads by groups like Affordable Housing and Local Jobs Now to counter union groups pushing for wage requirements for the building of new affordable housing.
- New York Times, Feb.7, 1896: Board of Brokers Organized
- Biography summary. The Real Deal. TRD Data file. .
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