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May 18, 2010

Panel discusses CBA reforms; in successful West Coast CBAs, signatories don't take developer cash; developer pays upfront for affordable housing

Atlantic Yards Report

Even if experts disagree on some aspects of reforming Community Benefits Agreements (CBAs) in New York City, they pretty much agree on several factors that, in their absence, detract from the legitimacy of the Atlantic Yards CBA:

  • signatories shouldn't take money from the developer
  • the city's Uniform Land Use Review Procedure (ULURP) shouldn't be circumvented
  • the CBA should have real teeth in it

The panel discussion last night at the Bar Association of the City of New York was titled Community Benefits Agreements: Time for Reform? (Audio is here.)

Beyond debate about whether the city should establish rules on CBAs--a recommendation in a Bar Association report issued in March--panelists also agreed that policies on issues like local hiring and living wages should be institutionalized citywide rather than subject to project-by-project negotiations.

The presence of such policies would vitiate the appeal of CBAs like the one for Atlantic Yards.

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Posted by eric at May 18, 2010 11:35 AM