“Basically, all things considered, he felt that it was time to withdraw,” said Johanna Garcia, a spokesperson for Jackson. “This is based on conversations with different members, speakers office, small business coalition.”
The proposed legislation would have given small businesses in good standing the right to renew their commercial leases. If the landlord and the business owner could not agree on a fair rent they would enter binding arbitration.
Jackson said the measure was necessary prevent small businesses from closing due to rising rents, to prevent exploitation and stop rent-gouging.
Council Speaker Christing Quinn did not bring the bill to a vote, and instead offered counter-proposals which Jackson said were inadequate.
In an unusual move, Jackson filed a motion on November 30 to bring the bill to a vote despite the speaker’s opposition. The bill was scheduled for a vote on December 9, but Jackson withdrew his motion prior to that date.
Although the bill expires at the end of this year, Jackson decided it would be more strategic to wait, said Garcia. Jackson will meet with the New York Small Business Congress in 2010, assess their needs and decide what measures to pursue, she said.
Steve Null, an advocate of the Small Business Survival Act and member of the Coalition for Fair Business Rents, gave his reasons for supporting regulation of commercial rents.