By David Brand
Nos Quedamos, an coalition of local community groups that organized to demand affordable housing in Willets Point, has expanded their efforts to secure community resources.
On Jan. 16, Nos Quedamos joined representatives from various chambers of commerce for a meeting in Corona to support the Small Business Jobs Protection Act, sponsored by City Councilmember Ydanis Rodriguez.
“Small businesses are the backbone of our local economy. They provide jobs and make our city culturally rich,” Nos Quedamos said in a statement. “Small business need protection against gentrification and displacement we need the Small Business Jobs Survival Act as the least in New York City.”
The Small Business Jobs Protection Act would protect small businesses during lease negotiations and will mitigate against unfair displacement of mom and pop shops in New York City.
The legislation would serve as a “bill of rights” for small businesses, according to The Indypendent. The bill would specifically create a limit for security deposits, mandate arbitration in lease disputes and establish a ten-year minimum for leases. The measures would limit landlords’ ability to increase rent and displace small businesses.
“It hurts me every time I see a small mom and pop shop close down because they lost their lease,” said Frank Garcia, chairman of the National Association of Latino State Chambers.
“It hurts our community and the vibrancy of our City.”