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Public Advocate Letitia James Releases Worst NYC Landlords Of 2015 List

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) -- Watch out, landlords.

Public Advocate Letitia James released a complete list of the Worst Landlords in New York City for 2015, listing 3,393 landlords in an interactive database citing violations, complaints and housing court activity.

James made the announcement at a rally supporting tenants rights, held in Foley Square on Monday.

The 2015 list combines data from the Department of Housing Preservation Development (HPD) alongside information from the Department of Buildings (DOB) to include violations, tenant complaints and other issues. Users can also monitor housing court activity of their landlords, and search for different addresses throughout the five boroughs.

This year's top ten worst landlords has shifted since the 2014 list, with four of last year's worst offenders shifted down due to improvements in their buildings. Two other landlords who previously ranked in the top ten were removed from the list entirely.

Check out the database here

The study found the highest number of buildings on the list are in Brooklyn, followed by Manhattan. The top three worst landlords -- Ved Parkash, Harry D. Silverstein and Yechiel Weinberger -- own properties in the Bronx, Brooklyn and Queens.

Landlords of buildings with 35 units or more are placed on the Watchlist if their buildings have an average of two or more serious violations or active complaints per unit. Landlords of smaller buildings -- 35 units or less -- require three open, serious violations or active complaints.

Parkash, who was named the worst offender on the list, has 2,235 HPD violations, and 134 DOB complaints, over 7,200 units in 11 buildings. All of his buildings are located in the Bronx. 

One resident in a building under Parkash's ownership told 1010 WINS' Sonia Rincon that rats and constant gas leaks are among some of the problems the landlord routinely ignores.

"I don't think we should have to live with no heat," she said. "How can you put stoves in here that you know are not functioning right?"

The Worst Landlords Watchlist was created by Bill de Blasio when he was working as a public advocate in 2010. De Blasio was sworn in as Mayor of New York City in 2014.

"For five years, the Landlord Watch List has been a vital tool for tenants, advocates, and elected officials who are dedicated to protecting affordable housing," de Blasio said in a statement. "I applaud Public Advocate James for continuing to expand the capabilities of the list, and working hard to ensure that New Yorkers have a resource that helps them assert their rights."


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