Not all the people giving lip service to “we’re all in this together” are virtue-signaling hypocrites. Some really mean it.
Surveys conducted last month estimated that 40 % of renters in New York City, if not more, would not be able to pay their April rent, which was due last week.
This threatens landlords as well, as the shortfall will make it difficult for them to pay their own water and sewer bills at their buildings, not to mention taxes, The 200-300 tenants in Mario Salerno’s properties, however, found a version of this sign taped up in the halls:
Mario Salerno said in an interview that he did not care about losing his rental income in April, nor care what the exact amount was that he would not be collecting from his 80 apartments. He will be losing hundreds of thousands of dollars by canceling the month’s rent, but his sole concern, he said, was trying to make life a little easier for his renters. He is even forgoing rent for those who kept their jobs and are working from home.
“My concern is everyone’s health,” said Salerno. “I told them just to make sure that everyone has food on their table.”
He’s not exactly Michael Bloomberg. During the day, he runs the Salerno Auto Body Shop and gasoline station, which his father opened in 1959.
In the 1980s Salerno bought vacant lots across Brooklyn to store cars damaged in accidents before they were repaired, and eventually turned 18 of the lots into apartment buildings. He’s counting on the auto business to keep food on his own table until conditions improve for his renters.
“I say, don’t worry about paying me, worry about your neighbor and worry about your family,” he told reporters.