Closed Businesses Required to Pay Up In Full

About RIOC/Hudson Related's Plan To Stiff Main Street Retail on Rent Relief

Updated 5 weeks ago David Stone
How many "fragile" Main Street businesses will fail because of RIOC's and Hudson Related's planned draconian collection policies?
How many "fragile" Main Street businesses will fail because of RIOC's and Hudson Related's planned draconian collection policies?
© David Stone / Roosevelt Island Daily

As the coronavirus crisis slams Main Street's business community, slashing revenue for some, eliminating it for most, the best RIOC and Hudson Related are prepared to do in helping "fragile commercial establishments" is hold off collections for a few months. And that's only for the worst off.

In documents released yesterday, the State agency, working with Hudson Related, exposed plans to stiff retail establishments struggling through the coronavirus shut down by demanding full rent payments.

Even for those put completely out of business by Governor Cuomo's New York PAUSE restrictions.

What RIOC blithely calls "much needed relief" does nothing more than defer full payments for a few months. At best, businesses contracted through Hudson Related's retail management agreement with RIOC will have until only March of next year to catch up, regardless of economic conditions or how long they've been shut down.

The bigger picture: Roosevelt Island News

RIOC collects nearly $78,000 in monthly rent payments from Hudson Related but does not plan to relinquish one dime of it. But the state offers the lucky establishments "interest free" treatment.

It's important to note that RIOC is not a profit-making business struggling to survive but a New York State agency with what's widely seen as a bloated budget with vastly greater revenue streams than Main Street retail. Budget figures show $5,728,397 operating profit with nearly $70,000 in current assets for the last fiscal year. Real rent relief for businesses poses little hazard for RIOC.

While potential longterm impacts from draconian collection policies are unknown, imagining that many operations can withstand months of lost revenue and still pay up in full to Hudson Related and ultimately RIOC is an indulgence in fantasy.

Hudson Related, the documents suggest, has little choice in the matter. As managers of Main Street retail, RIOC will require them to pay in full, making minimal allowances for deferred payments, leaving them with little choice but to collect from closed businesses.

PupCulture, Fuji East, Fusion Salon and other closed enterprises will be required to funnel cash in RIOC's direction, although unable to earn income. But perhaps most badly affected will be food service businesses like Nisi that have stayed open as a public service in spite of severely reduced revenue.

RIOC's made no allowances for them either.

Reporting by David Stone 

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