REBNY Annual Report: 2012 a successful and productive year for industry’s most influential trade organization

-- Membership milestone is reached as REBNY now counts over 13,000 members--

--Challenges including Superstorm Sandy demonstrated industry’s resilience and hard work of members--

New York, NY – January 29, 2013 -- The Real Estate Board of New York (REBNY) 2012 Annual Report confirms that the year was a busy and successful one for the city’s leading real estate trade association. The report details the efforts and activities of REBNY on behalf of its members over the course of the year including advocating on important issues on the city, state and federal levels to improve the real estate industry, and enhance the vitality of the New York City economy.

Many of the successes outlined in the Report highlight the efforts of Mary Ann Tighe who concluded her dynamic, three-year term as Chairman of REBNY at the end of 2012. She was REBNY’s first female Chairman in the organization’s 117-year history. She provided extraordinary leadership over this past year, and throughout her chairmanship, with several initiatives to further the vitality and competitiveness of New York City on a global scale. 

Chairman Tighe focused attention on the pressing need to open East Midtown to new development.  Her forthright advocacy proved instrumental in the Department of City Planning’s decision to initiate a Midtown East Rezoning Plan.  By identifying zoning impediments to build new iconic office buildings on overbuilt sites, rezoning East Midtown will invigorate and strengthen its position as one of the world’s preeminent office districts by attracting new businesses.

Additionally, she urged the City to keep an open option for a No. 7 line subway station at West 41st and 10th Avenue that will make the much-needed future station on the far West Side a reality.  Also under Chairman Tighe’s leadership, REBNY successfully advocated for the renewal of two major NYC economic development programs: the 421a Program and the Industrial and Commercial Abatement Program (ICAP). Both of these programs are critical and work to encourage capital investment in new housing, commercial development and renovation, as well as offset the heavy tax burden the real property tax system places on these properties.

Chairman Tighe’s contributions to the membership include raising REBNY’s digital presence by calling for an upgrade of the website and creating a new identity on social media outlets like Twitter and Facebook. REBNY currently boasts more than 15,000 Twitter followers and more than 3,200 Facebook fans— a huge feat in such a short period of time.

More broadly, REBNY had many legislative achievements to be proud of in 2012. REBNY’s advocacy was critical as the city moved to change the way crane operators are trained and licensed.  Because of REBNY’s efforts, the changes enacted by the NYC Department of Buildings (DOB) will result in safer construction worksites moving forward.

REBNY’s involvement and support of the second year of the Committee to Save New York gave terrific impetus to the effort by Governor Cuomo and the State Legislature to put New York State on sounder fiscal footing. On a federal level, REBNY played an important role in a successful Court of Appeal’s decision which should help the industry to stem the abuses caused by the Interstate Lands Sales Act (ILSA) in New York City.

The Report also cites several economic development initiatives that REBNY has been a long-time proponent for that were successful in moving forward in various stages in 2012 such as the NYU planned expansion, the Chelsea Market planned expansion, Barclays Center, and Willets Point.

While the year was positive overall, the New York City and Tri-State region faced great challenges in the wake of Superstorm Sandy. Many properties were greatly affected as a result of the storm’s impact, especially in Lower Manhattan. REBNY was instrumental in providing information and services to assist in the recovery efforts including the compilation of available office space to displaced tenants. The response and resiliency of the members overall proved incredible with property managers and owners making arrangements and around-the-clock-repairs to bring back tenants in record time.

The REBNY 2012 Annual Report also highlights the many benefits, tools and educational resources that were available to members throughout the year. REBNY managed and hosted 38 special events and educational seminars in 2012.  Additionally, invaluable data reports on the residential and retail markets were distributed to members. REBNY also created new data platforms including Legal Line Question of the Week, Numbers You Need to Know, and the Brokerage Division Confidence Survey.

Additional highlights of REBNY’s efforts and activities in 2012 include work on the Living Wage legislation; the Prevailing Wage bill; 32BJ; Paid Sick leave; the Green Building Study; the Carbon Monoxide detector law; and the Real Property Income and Expense (RPIE) bill.

A full copy of the REBNY 2012 Annual Report can be found at www.REBNY.com.


About The Real Estate Board of New York

The Real Estate Board of New York is the city’s leading real estate trade association with more than 13,000 members.  REBNY represents major commercial and residential property owners and builders, brokers and managers, banks, financial service companies, utilities, attorneys, architects, contractors and other individuals and institutions professionally interested in the city’s real estate.  REBNY is involved in crucial municipal matters including tax policy, city planning and zoning, rental conditions, land use policy, building codes and legislation.  In addition, REBNY publishes reports providing indicators of market prices for both the residential and commercial sectors. Please visit us online at www.REBNY.com


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