It was a win and a loss for state Sen. Alessandra Biaggi on a pair of bills she championed in the upper chamber.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed S.4281A on Dec. 20, which would allow domestic violence victims to terminate residential leases without penalty. Once it becomes law, landlords can only charge domestic violence victims pro-rata rent up to the lease termination date.
“The purpose of the bill is to give survivors of domestic violence the ability to remove themselves from a dangerous living situation without facing legal or financial penalties,” Biaggi said, in a release. “It is imperative that we continue to eliminate barriers to seeking safety for survivors of domestic abuse, and expand avenues for these New Yorkers to access permanent housing that can give them the space to rebuild their independence.”
Unfortunately it wasn’t all cheers in Biaggi’s office, because that same day Cuomo also vetoed S.3465, which would have required all public transportation workers to undergo a human trafficking recognition training program.
“We will go back to the drawing board and rework the language of this legislation, fight to get it passed in both houses again, and bring it back to the governor for his signature,” Biaggi said. “As I write these words, people are being trafficked in and around our city and state. There is no time to waste unless we have no regard for human life.”
“We need to use every tool in our toolbox to combat this egregious exploitation that is inextricably tied up with movement,” Brooklyn borough president Eric Adams said, in a release. “Arming our public transportation workers with essential training is a no-brainer.”