Costa Constantinides and REBNY’s Jim Whelan (Photos via Facebook, VoteCosta)The exemption for rent-regulated buildings from the city’s emission caps is about to end for some of them.The City Council on Thursday voted in favor of a bill that subjects certain rent-regulated buildings to the requirements of Local Law 97, which imposes heavy fines on buildings that contribute too much to global warming.The year-old law aims to cut citywide greenhouse-gas emissions 40 percent by 2030 and 80 percent by 2050. The new measure, sponsored by Queens Democrat Costa Constantinides, would tweak the law to include buildings where up to 35 percent of units are rent-regulated. But it would give them two more years to comply than buildings already covered by the law have.The original law carved out buildings with at least one rent-regulated apartment, instead subjecting them to less stringent energy conservation reporting requirements. The blanket exemption of rent-regulated apartments largely sprung from concern that landlords would hike regulated rents to pay for green retrofits through the state’s Major Capital Improvements program.But last year, as part of a major overhaul of rent regulation, the state limited such rent hikes to properties where more than 35 percent of the apartments are rent-regulated. That freed the City Council to extend emission caps to under-35-percent buildings without triggering rent increases for their regulated units.The latest version of Constantinides’ bill, released this week, gives those buildings until January 1, 2026, to meet their emissions cap and then until May 1, 2027, to submit an initial report documenting their compliance.“Our work today will help New Yorkers get back to work in good jobs that make our air cleaner, kick-start the renewable energy revolution, and chart a course to a brighter, greener, safer future,” Constantinides said in a statement.The measure does not address the real estate industry’s primary complaint about Local Law 97: that it penalizes owners with densely occupied buildings. The Real Estate Board of New York said this week that though it backs “practical measures to limit carbon emissions and stop climate change,” it isn’t clear that Constantinides measure will meaningfully reduce carbon emissions.“The city has not done the analysis to identify how many buildings will be impacted or even where these buildings are located. It has no solutions as to how these critical goals will be accomplished,” the trade group’s president, James Whelan, said in a statement. “The city is setting owners up for failure, forcing them to pay fines instead of helping these cash-strapped, rent-regulated buildings invest in making environmental upgrades.”Contact Kathryn Brenzel Full Name* Share on FacebookShare on TwitterShare on LinkedinShare via Email Share via Shortlink TagsLocal Law 97rent regulated Email Address* Share via Shortlink Message*
“The removal of this tax happened during the committee stage of the bill…The National Treasury will be proposing to the National Assembly the re-introduction of the excise duty on betting within the next six months.” Kenya announces new sports betting regulations Tax on betting companies was scrapped after an obscure stakeholder group — identified only by a non-existent website shade.co.ke made the proposals on May 15.FILE PHOTO: A gambler uses his cell phone to launch the Sportpesa online betting link, along the streets of Nairobi, Kenya. /ReutersAnd the parliamentary committee justified the reversal saying the taxes hurt the industry, which has led to the closure of betting companies in Kenya, yet international players continue to operate. The scrapping of the excise duty tax has coincided with restructuring of ownership at SportsPesa raising speculation the company is about to return. A sports enthusiast holds a betting slip while different games are broadcast on screens at a sports betting shop in July 15, 2019 in Nairobi. – Kenya’s Betting Control and Licence Board announced sweeping restrictions in May 2019, on gambling advertisements, including outright bans on celebrity endorsements and social media promotions, in a blow to the fast-growing gambling industry in East Africa. (Photo by SIMON MAINA / AFP) (Photo credit should read SIMON MAINA/AFP/Getty Images) The leading sports betting firm SportPesa Global Holdings made a profit after tax of almost Sh1.6 billion in 2018, according to its financial statements. Last year, the government again slapped the industry with additional taxes, introducing a 20 percent excise duty charge on any amount staked. Treasury Cabinet Secretary Ukur Yatani blamed the Parliament, saying the industry has been lobbying the government for the removal of the taxes. “The players in the industry have been petitioning the government to reduce taxation in the industry,” said Mr Yatani. This saw the government and the betting industry face off in a move that led to SportPesa losing its betting licence last July before it withdrew from Kenya last September in response to what it called “the hostile taxation and operating environment in the country”. Their withdrawal resulted in 400 job losses and cancellation of its local sports sponsorships. In 2018, the National Treasury introduced a 15 percent tax on betting companies and 20 percent withholding tax on all winnings. Betting gained prevalence in Kenya, which saw the industry expand on the back of mobile payments and digital applications, creating a multi-billion industry. Entrepreneurs worried as Kenya plans to introduce digital tax Related Tax paid by betting firms in Kenya almost triples in three years The Kenyan government will bring back excise tax on betting companies in the next six months after a public outcry over scrapping of the 20 percent duty in the Finance Bill 2020.
UPDATED SUNDAY: Troy has announced that it will introduce University of Kentucky offensive coordinator Neal Brown as the Trojans’ next head football coach on Monday. Brown is expected to arrive in Alabama on Sunday afternoon before a 9:30 a.m. Monday press conference.“I am very happy for Neal to earn a head coaching job and believe Troy has made an outstanding hire,” Kentucky head coach Mark Stoops said in a statement released by the school. “Congratulations to Neal and his family and I appreciate his hard work at Kentucky.”ORIGINAL: Neal Brown knew the questions were coming, and he politely asked reporters outside the visitors’ locker room Saturday at Papa John’s Cardinal Stadium to hold off on their queries about the Troy head coaching position.All of two minutes later, he was asked about what multiple national media outlets reported as time ticked down on the University of Kentucky’s 44-40 loss at Louisville.Is UK’s offensive coordinator ready to become a head coach?“I think it’s a little too early. I don’t want to speak on Troy’s search,” Brown, a former UK receiver, said. “I’ll say this. I love Kentucky. Like I said, I’m proud of those kids in there. I’m proud to have the opportunity to coach in this game. I think this season — and I’ve said this before — don’t let this ending sour what happened this year.”Fox Sports and a number of others are reporting that the 34-year-old Brown, who worked four years at Troy, is the man to replace longtime coach Larry Blakeney, who announced earlier this season he’s retiring. Brown, a Danville native who played at UK under coach Hal Mumme, also served as Texas Tech’s offensive coordinator before rejoining the Wildcats.UK head coach Mark Stoops, also asked about the reports, said, “I think we’ll talk about that at the appropriate time. … I think that’ll play out in the next 24 hours here.”Brown didn’t deny the news, saying, “It’s not my place” to speak about them.”And so it’s a source of conflict for young UK players such as Stanley “Boom” Williams, the true freshman running back who ran for 126 yards and 2 touchdowns on his 18 carries Saturday. Williams, of course, wants what’s best for his coordinator. But he also wants Brown to stick around.“It’s kind of crazy, but like I said, we’re not too worried about it right now,” Williams said. “We’re still worried about this loss we just took. The biggest thing right now is that I wish him the best in his future, but I hope his future is here at Kentucky.”