White Plains, NY — My colleagues at the Board of Legislators on Monday night passed a measure that sets new rules governing the buying and selling of co-ops.

Under the legislation, the boards of cooperatives -- which approve the sale of individual units -- will have 15 days to tell buyers whether or not their applications for purchase are complete.  Once an application is deemed complete, boards will have 60 days to accept or reject the application.  If an application is rejected, the co-op board must send a notice of the rejection to the County's Human Rights Commission, which has the power to investigate instances of discrimination under the County's Fair Housing Law.

Unfortunately, I could not join my colleagues in supporting the measure.  My "no" vote reflects the concerns of my constituents.  I spoke with many co-op residents in my district who expressed concern that the measure could have a financial impact on co-op shareholders, possibly raising shareholder fees and increasing insurance costs for co-op boards.

Shareholders in cooperative housing elect their board members are confident in the decisions they make. Co-op boards are advocates for all shareholders in their corporations. My constituents thank their hard working board members for their time, dedication and fairness in protecting current and future shareholders.

We all agree that discrimination not only is illegal but is wrong. We need to make sure that people are protected from discrimination, and we need to make sure that people who have been discriminated against use the legal remedies already available to them, remedies that were available before this legislation.