Condo Tax Appears to Have Been Withdrawn

eHezi Archives 6 Comments

BOCK_BALL_KANE-6Jul09PC Taxpayer Resistance Given Voice by Like-minded Politicians

(L-R): County Board Legislator (R-C-I)-8th District) Tom Bock, Somers Republican Committee Chairman James Chisholm, NYS Assemblyman and Senate candidate Greg Ball, Somers resident, Somers Supervisor Mary Beth Murphy, and County Board Legislator (R-4th District) Greg Kane celebrate a victory over the ‘Condo Tax’ (S.1706-A) at the Elephant Hotel Somers Town Hall on July 6th.

Somers, NY — Senate Bill S.1706-A, known colloquially as “the condo tax,’ has reportedly been withdrawn by its sponsor, NY State Senator Suzi Oppenheimer after immense pressure from Westchester residents who called and wrote to express their opposition to the bill.

“Chalk one up for the good guys,” quipped Assemblyman Greg Ball (R, C, I – Patterson), who represents Northern Westchester and was the only state legislator in Westchester to vote against the Assembly version of the bill, A.4588-A. “This proves that being an effective legislator is all about reaching out to your constituents at the grassroots level. I sent a letter to the condo owners in my district to help call and write Senator Oppenheimer to work to defeat this bill, and the response was overwhelming. I'm glad that the measure is now dead on arrival in the Senate.”

The bill would have changed how condominiums are assessed for property taxation, and drew criticism from both condo owners and good government groups, who criticized how the now-defunct proposal circumvented the state legislature’s home rule policy by limiting the bill to “counties with a population of more than nine hundred twenty-three thousand but less than nine hundred twenty four thousand” thus singling out Westchester, rather than naming it specifically, which would have required consent from local legislators.

“While I am overjoyed by our success, we must remain vigilant that this proposal does not creep back in some other form under the guise of some other bill,” Ball warned.

eHeziCondo Tax Appears to Have Been Withdrawn

Comments 6

  1. This just proves what a farce this whole country is. Rotten from top to bottom, especially 99% of those in politics.

  2. Let’s be clear about two things:
    I don’t think any is arguing that condo owners shouldn’t have to pay their fair share (equalization).
    This bill had nothing to do with that.
    It would have changed the assessments of condos and co-ops to value them commercially. Would it have accomplished equalization? Probably. But it was a round-about, underhanded way of doing things. I don’t think they were going to let condo owners open up an Applebee’s franchise in their living rooms, so making residential properties “commercial” for taxation purposes is underhanded.
    The second, more egregious, underhanded provision is that normally, if the state legislature wants to make a piece of legislation that affects a county (Sales tax, empire zone, stop sign cameras, etc.) they are constitutionally required to get a “Home rule” request from the municipality (town board, county legislators, etc). This bill circumvented the constitution by not specifically naming Westchester: Senator Oppenheimer knew that 99% of the municipalities here are opposed to this idea, so the bill was written to affect counties “with a population of 924,000 to 930,000.” There’s only one county that fits that description, you guessed it, Westchester.
    Underhanded legislation. Kudos to Greg Ball and the Somers Legislators for defeating it.

  3. I can smell a huge lawsuit taken as it should be on grounds of fairness, there’s a novel idea.
    Everyone should pay their fair share based on the market value of the property.

  4. Fair market value is what a willing buyer is prepared to pay a willing seller. If the transaction is for $400,000 then the property should be taxed at that amount. The discounted value of the condo is reflected in the price of the asset.
    These condo & coop protection devices are to benifit the New York City market. Home rule should prevail but it can’t because the State control the assessment process. You would be amazed at the tax differential that a condo or coop payes as it relates to a single family house. It’s all about votes. It’s a lot easier to mobilize an entire coop project than 1000 single family homes.

  5. Just becuse two homes are worth $400k does not make them equal. For that $400k house you receive Fee Simple ownership. That is absolute ownership except for the four powers of government. You own the land and the improvments.
    Similarly, a Condo is Fee Simple. You own your unit (from the middle of the walls inward), plus an undivided common interest in the land and common areas.
    A coop is different. You have a Leasehold Estate plus stock ownership in a corporation. Since ownership in a coop is stock and an appurtenant propietary lease there is no real property ownership, and a smaller “bundle of rights.”
    Bottom line, you get less for your $400k and no real property ownership.
    If I get less, I should pay less, that is fair, no?
    Also this bill was killed two weeks ago, I do not understand why it is only being reported now.
    Any tax adjustments that are needed should be accomplished as part of a comprehensive revaluation, not a piecemeal bill as this one was.

  6. Everyone should pay their fare share based on fair market values. A house and a condo or co-op that are all worth say $400,000 should pay the same taxes. Otherwise it is discrimination and unconstitutional, since we are all supposed to be treated equally.
    The same should apply for business properties.
    I think we all know that is all a big lie. Probably the biggest myth and lie in the US.
    Typical politicians cave in to pressure because they are scared they will be voted out of office.

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