ACTION COMMITTEE PRESSES
FOR CONTINUED TAX FAIRNESS
As homeowners in housing cooperatives and condominiums throughout New York
City enjoy the final year of the three-year abatement of property taxes
mandated by Chapter 273 of the Laws of 1996, the Action Committee for Reasonable
Real Estate Taxes continues its crusade to ensure long-term property tax
fairness for these homeowners.
The current three-year abatement program has gone a long way towards
correcting inequities, but it will sunset on June 30, 1999, unless legislation
is enacted to keep it going. Both the Mayor and the City Council have
indicated their support for continuing tax relief for homeowners in cooperatives
and condominiums. Council Speaker Peter Vallone had contacted the State
Legislature last December, when it held a short special session. He requested
swift passage of legislation to continue the co-op/ condo abatement at
that time; but that special session did not take up this issue. Mayor
Giuliani's Financial Plan is also supportive of the abatement, projecting
funds to continue it in force. However, as of this writing, the Mayor
and the City Council have not yet joined to send a 'Home Rule Message'
about this to the State legislature, where legislation to continue our
abatement must be enacted.
Assembly member Pete Grannis secured strong Assembly support for the
original abatement legislation in 1996. Now he has introduced A.4486,
which provides for an extension of the abatement and also authorizes the
local legislative body to establish appropriate abatement percentages
for different taxpayers. In 1996, Senator Roy Goodman championed our cause
in the Senate; CNYC and the Action Committee are confident that Senator
Goodman will continue to work for tax fairness. We urge his constituents
to contact him to ask him to introduce new legislation to extend co-op/condo
To ensure a seamless transition to a fourth year of tax abatements, this
legislation needs to be passed quickly, because the Department of Finance
will then need time to verifying the qualifications of applicants for
abatements that should begin with 1999 property tax bills.
Chapter 273 of the Laws of 1996 further required that the City develop
a long range plan to continue progress toward tax fairness for homeowners
in cooperatives and condominiums. CNYC has received repeated assurances
that serious work is progressing on the development of a long-term plan.
CNYC and the Action Committee for Reasonable Real Estate Taxes continue
to monitor the progress of the long term plan and will keep members informed
COMPARATIVE STUDY OF 1997
The Comparative Study of 1997 Operating Costs – with cost information
for more than 700 cooperatives and condominiums – was recently sent
to all CNYC member cooperatives and condominiums and to professionals
affiliated with CNYC. This annual analysis provides a framework to help
you decide if your own building is functioning economically and efficiently
by studying the various costs of operating a building. Code numbers are
used to identify the participants, preserving the anonymity of individual
cooperatives and condominiums.
The Comparative Study analyzes all data on a per-room basis, beginning
with the current assessment and mortgage figures for participating buildings,
as well as the maintenance cost. It then lists amounts spent per room
on wages, fuel, utilities, repairs and maintenance, insurance, management
costs, administrative costs, water and sewer fees, property tax, and debt
service. When possible, elevator maintenance and legal and accounting
costs are each listed separately. The Study also presents summary statistics,
calculating the averages and medians for each item, and the average portion
of total operating budget devoted to each category.
CNYC is already working on the 1998 Comparative Study. YOUR 1998 financial
statement is important to the Comparative Study. Please forward your annual
financial statement as soon as it is ready, so that your data can be included.
If this is the first time that you will be participating in the Comparative
Study, a room count for your building will be very helpful.
When the Study is sent to members and subscribers, those that have contributed
will be advised of their code numbers so that they can find their own
statistics. Each member building will receive its own copy of the Study.
Additional copies can be purchased from CNYC for $5.