Syracuse, N.Y. – Syracuse Mayor Ben Walsh said a State Supreme Court order issued Friday enforcing the City’s security requirements at Skyline Apartments will help protect residents and the community. The State Supreme Court judge imposed the City’s request to require Green National to maintain the security staffing required under the City’s June 2021 Nuisance Abatement Order at the Skyline Apartment complex on James Street.
At Mayor Walsh’s direction, on Monday, Corporation Counsel’s office brought an order to show cause, an expedited request for court intervention, presenting evidence of repeated failures by Green National to meet security requirements. The Judge’s order put additional safeguards in place to ensure the maintenance of security at Skyline, including a requirement that Green National employ off-duty peace or police officers to supply the required security if, for any reason, private security is unable to maintain the requisite staffing levels. There is also a mandated reporting obligation should security fall below the required levels. These safeguards are intended to significantly decrease or eliminate any lapse in security coverage. The Court set the next hearing on the City’s petition for May 27.
“The only outcome we seek is safe, quality housing for the residents of Skyline Apartments and the community. The City has been fighting this battle for years, and we welcome the Court’s assistance in holding Green National accountable to its responsibilities as a landlord,” said Mayor Walsh. “We will continue to use every authority available and work with partners at the local, state and federal level to protect Skyline residents.”
The City’s petition follows an announcement last Thursday by New York State Attorney General Letitia James that the State will retain a $250,000 payment for failing to fully comply with all the requirements of an agreement with the Office of the Attorney General. Notwithstanding the correction by Green National of more than 150 housing violations at its properties within the 60-day compliance period, the AG documented several continuing violations.
The City’s HOME (High Occupancy Monitoring and Enforcement) Unit constantly monitors conditions at the more than 350-unit apartment complex. The HOME Unit, which includes representatives of the City’s Code Enforcement Division, Neighborhood and Business Development Department, Law Department, Mayor’s Office and Police and Fire Departments, was created by Mayor Walsh in June 2021 following worsening conditions at Skyline and certain other large affordable rental properties.
Code Enforcement, Police and Fire conduct regular unannounced inspections at these properties to enforce health and safety regulations. Previously, Code Enforcement issued three separate unfit declarations regarding common areas at Skyline Apartments. The declarations permit the withholding of public rent payments by Onondaga County until violations are corrected.