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Barney Rosset Memorial Set for May 9

Barney RossetArne Svenson Barney Rosset in 1986.

The family of late publishing legend Barney Rosset, who died in February at the age of 89, has planned a public memorial for next month.

A representative of Grove/Atlantic – the parent company of Grove Press, which Mr. Rosset sold in 1986 – told The Local that the memorial, organized by the publisher’s wife Astrid Myers along with his four children and described as “a celebration of his life and work,” will take place at the Great Hall at Cooper Union, a short walk from the literary iconoclast’s loft near Cooper Square. Read more…

Rent Board Approves Increases

IMG_0483Khristopher J. Brooks Demonstrators calling for a freeze on rent increases this year gathered outside Cooper Union before tonight’s vote.

Rent prices across the city will increase 3.75 percent for tenants signing a one-year lease and 7.25 percent for tenants signing a two-year lease.

Members of the Rent Guidelines Board passed the increases by a vote of 5-4 Monday night during a meeting in Cooper Union’s Great Hall. The vote came at the conclusion of a raucous meeting during which dozens of demonstrators — many of whom chanted and held placards — called for a freeze on increases this year.

The increases, which apply only to rent stabilized apartments and lofts, take effect Oct. 1 and last until Sept. 30, 2012.

Based on the $1,700 a month average for studio apartments in the East Village, the increases approved by the board tonight translate into an average of $63.75 for one-year leases and $123.25 for two year leases. For tenants living in a one-bedroom, where the East Village averages $2,500 a month in rent, the average increases are $93.75 for one-year leases and $181.25 for two-year leases. Housing activists said after the vote that the negotiations preceding tonight’s meeting were slanted in favor of landlords.

An hour before the vote, scores of people gathered outside the Great Hall. Many of those in attendance had taken part in a rally organized by Tenants and Neighbors earlier in the afternoon.
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