New York’s 2023 legislative session is underway, and New Economy Project is working with groups statewide to advance a bold policy agenda that builds wealth and power in Black, brown, and immigrant communities.
Last Tuesday, we joined dozens of coalition partners in our state capital for a rousing day of action, during which we rallied and met with legislators to win support for two groundbreaking bills: the New York Public Banking Act and the Tenant Opportunity to Purchase Act.
TOPA would give tenants the first opportunity to collectively purchase rental buildings up for sale, empowering New Yorkers to take control of their homes and create permanently affordable housing that stabilizes communities.
Along with our partners in the Housing Justice for All and NYC Community Land Initiative coalitions, we organized a briefing for legislators on why, in the face of New York’s housing crisis, TOPA is urgently needed to decommodify housing and build community wealth.
Meanwhile, members of the NYS Community Equity Agenda and Public Bank NYC coalitions rallied with legislators in the Capitol Building, demanding passage of the New York Public Banking Act. The Act paves the way for local governments to create public banks that will invest in permanently affordable housing, small and worker-owned businesses, renewable energy, and other community-controlled economic development initiatives in historically-redlined neighborhoods.
When we rely on private banking to finance public goods, we privatize the public sector, one loan at a time. This leads to declining administrative capacity, corrupt politics, and unsafe communities.
— Ron T. Kim (@rontkim) February 10, 2023
NYS must take steps to establish democratic financial institutions that serve the needs of our communities. We need bold, local action to create an equitable economy & advance racial & economic justice.
It’s time for NY to take action & allow the establishment of public banks! pic.twitter.com/oj1RBKONyI
— Robert Jackson (@SenatorRJackson) February 7, 2023
By day’s end, we and our coalition partners had met with dozens of legislators – many of whom committed to co-sponsor the two bills – generated strong media coverage, and built further solidarity between New York’s housing justice and public banking movements.
Join the fight! Visit these coalition websites to learn more and take action: