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Rep. Carolyn Maloney Has Stake in Entity Notorious for Evicting Tenants

New York Democrat has minor interest in Virginia property management firm that has evicted 24 people since 2013

Rep. Carolyn Maloney, D-N.Y., inherited a stake in a Virginia property partnership notorious for quickly evicting tenants when they fall behind on rent. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)
Rep. Carolyn Maloney, D-N.Y., inherited a stake in a Virginia property partnership notorious for quickly evicting tenants when they fall behind on rent. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

New York Democratic Rep. Carolyn B. Maloney is one of the richest lawmakers on Capitol Hill (the 42nd richest, according to our calculations), with most of her non-congressional income flowing in from real estate holdings and partnerships.

One of those partnerships, Linkhorn Place Associates, which owns and operates two apartment complexes on the Virginia coast, is notorious for quickly evicting tenants who fall behind on their rent and for demanding money for pre-existing problems when they’re on the way out, according to a new report from the New York Daily News.

Linkhorn has evicted 24 tenants since 2013, the newspaper reported.

Maloney inherited a 4.8 percent stake in Linkhorn in 2013 and earned  $30,000 to $95,000 in income from rentals from 2013 to 2016.

A spokesman for Maloney’s campaign told the Daily News that Maloney and her three siblings each inherited a 4.8 percent stake in Linkhorn, a “passive minor interest,” after their father died in 2013.

The congresswoman has no say in the company’s operations.

“Throughout her career on the City Council and continuing into the Congress, Carolyn Maloney has been an effective proponent for, and defender of, affordable housing, rent regulation and tenant protection,” the spokesman said.

“She, along with her siblings, inherited a nonmanagerial passive minor interest in the Linkhorn apartments after the death of her father and has no role in managing the property. It is wrong to suggest otherwise,” the spokesman told the newspaper.

Maloney started her political career as an influential legislative staffer in Albany in the late 1970s, soon after marrying Goldman Sachs investment banker Clifton Maloney.

He went on to have a highly successful run with his own private investment firm, C.H.W. Maloney & Co., but died in 2009 attempting to climb the world’s sixth-highest mountain in Tibet.

Carolyn Maloney’s inheritance is mostly invested in prime residential real estate that generates more than $365,000 annually in rental income. Those include a five-story townhouse on Manhattan’s Upper East Side — the heart of the district she has represented since 1993 — and properties on Capitol Hill, Jamaica, the Virginia coast, and North Carolina.

Former residents who were evicted said Linkhorn was quick to pull the plug on their tenancy once they fell behind on rent even though there were issues with the apartments.

“It was like a slumlord,” former renter Justin Lacasse, 34, told the Daily News of Linkhorn.

“They were like, ‘Give us your money, I don’t care what type of condition it is in,’” he said.

Roberta Short, 74, was forced out of her apartment in 2016 once her lease expired because Linkhorn did not want her four cats living in the property, she told the newspaper.

When she moved out, Linkhorn tried to demand $2,200 to replace a living room carpet that was already worn and damaged when she moved in.

“I felt like they were trying to extort a lot of money out of me that — honest to God — I feel like I didn’t owe,” Short said.

Maloney faces a June 26 primary from hotel executive Suraj Patel, who raised more than half a million dollars in the fourth campaign filing quarter alone, according to Federal Elections Commission records.

She came under fire last month from Indian-American news sites for remarks downplaying her opponent’s fundraising numbers. 

“Well, it’s mainly from Indiana, where he’s from,” she said in an interview reported by Buzzfeed last month, when asked about Patel’s fundraising success, adding, “Mainly a huge amount of the name Patel, which is his name.”

Inside Elections with Nathan L. Gonzales rates the general election race Solid Democratic.

Paul Fontelo contributed to this report.Correction 1 p.m. | An earlier version of this story contained incorrect figures for how much income Maloney earned from her stake in Linkhorn.

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