“Tax Abatement Info” Law Sails Through Legislature

S397-2011: Provides condominium owners with access to the application submitted for the tax abatements

ACCO’s first legislative initiative sailed through the Senate & Assembly, & awaits only Governor Cuomo’s signature to become law.  Here’s how the voting went:

In Favor








This only happens when a bill is seen—by both parties—as “non-controversial.”  Clearly, all agreed that this problem obviously needed to be fixed.  We’re nonetheless grateful to our Legislators, & particularly to bill sponsors Senator Liz Krueger & Assemblymember Linda Rosenthal, for their thoughtful & prompt leadership on this issue.

The law which created the condominium tax abatement contains a very specific provision which prohibits disclosure of the form…even to those condo owners whose names are listed thereon.  The Dept. of Finance is very rigid in their interpretation of this law, despite the curious fact that virtually every piece of information it contains–with the exception of social security numbers–is publicly available on the DOF website!  In the case of errors, however, whether accidental or otherwise, it’s necessary to view the actual form submitted to ascertain why the tax credit was not applied.

When ACCO conceived this effort, we didn’t expect many people to be affected.  We knew a law was needed, but how many people are actually affected by errors–ministerial or other–that prevent them from enjoying the tax abatement to which they’re entitled?

As it turns out, judging by the number of complaints we hear on this very issue, a lot.  We’re gratified that affected owners will now be able to look at the original application forms & learn what went wrong.  Having this information will facilitate fixing the problem, initiating the abatement, and–in some cases–holding responsible parties accountable.

View the actual bill:  S397-2011

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