Emmis Granted Temporary Restraining Order Against Hot 97 Landlord

Emmis Radio, the parent company of Hot 97 (WQHT) FM, won a temporary restraining order against the New York City District Council of Carpenters Fund yesterday (May 9), the landlord of the building that houses three of its radio stations.

State Supreme Court Justice Bernard Fried lifted restrictions on the stations guests, ruling that visitors are allowed in with four days' notice and no guests.

Hot 97 must also pay for an armed security guard to be on the premise an hour before any guest arrives.

The station also agreed to install a phone outside of the building so the guard can call the NYPD when there's a problem.

Emmis accuses the Fund of "improperly and unlawfully" depriving all of its stations of "the use and enjoyment of its leasehold, with the intention of ultimately depriving Tenant of possession of the leasehold itself."

Emmis also alleges that the Fund "is carrying out a premeditated plan that is designed to either put Tenant out of business or at least drive Tenant out of the Premises."

In addition to Hot 97, Emmis operates two other radio stations inside the building, WRKS (KISS 98.7) FM and WQCD (CD101.9) FM.

Emmis labeled the ban on all visitors unreasonable and said the restrictions have "no rational relationship to the security issues cited by the Landlord as justification for the ban."

The restraining order is the latest chapter in the continuing saga involving Emmis and the Fund.

The two parties will return to court to face each other on May 19.