The title of the article is clearly misleading... while they are converted residentual apartments, this was not against the law or rented under the table.
"would amend the city’s multiple dwelling law and the administrative code to remove what lawmakers described as ambiguities in the current rules that allowed landlords to convert apartments in residential buildings into way stations for transient visitors."And the owner of one such hostel stated he was collecting and submitting occupancy taxes; so how could this be illegal? And as One Day calculated, it may be clearly the reason some chose this alternate method. We have some that are doing this locally, but are not collecting the occupancy taxes, those are the ones that need to be chastized. And as far as the safety measures go THAT is something that should be addressed and laws created to state that any new converted building would have to have the safety measures of an hotel and those existing would have X time to measure up to the new standards or be closed.