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Rent reductions sought in Kingston amid declared housing emergency

The Kingston Rent Guidelines Board held the first of two public hearings Tuesday as tenants, elected officials, and advocates stepped up calls for a rent reduction.

Prior to the meeting, housing activist group For the Many held a press conference outside Kingston City Hall. Mayor Steve Noble, a Democrat, addressed the gathering.

“When we looked at our housing situation a few years ago, we recognized that we had a couple of different issues,” Noble said. “One, no one had built housing in Kingston in a really long time. Two, we saw people taking advantage of that by creating this emergency by raising rents to levels that we had never seen before in Kingston. A 3% increase is something that we can see once in a while. A 5% increase would mean that, you know maybe a big investment was made in that property to be able to fix a tenant’s apartment. A 15, a 30%, a 40% rent increase that some of our tenants saw over the last two years, is completely inappropriate.”



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