Bill S2121A-2013

Enacts the Hurricane Sandy assessment relief act

Enacts the "Superstorm Sandy assessment relief act" authorizing eligible municipalities to provide assessment relief for property which was catastrophically damaged by Superstorm Sandy.

Details

Actions

  • Jan 8, 2014: REFERRED TO LOCAL GOVERNMENT
  • Jan 8, 2014: returned to senate
  • Jan 8, 2014: died in assembly
  • Jun 17, 2013: referred to real property taxation
  • Jun 17, 2013: DELIVERED TO ASSEMBLY
  • Jun 17, 2013: PASSED SENATE
  • Jun 13, 2013: AMENDED ON THIRD READING (T) 2121A
  • Feb 28, 2013: ADVANCED TO THIRD READING
  • Feb 27, 2013: 2ND REPORT CAL.
  • Feb 12, 2013: 1ST REPORT CAL.72
  • Jan 11, 2013: REFERRED TO LOCAL GOVERNMENT

Calendars

Votes

Memo

BILL NUMBER:S2121A

TITLE OF BILL: An act to enact the "Superstorm Sandy assessment relief act"; to amend the local finance law, in relation to certain real property tax refunds and credits

PURPOSE OR GENERAL IDEA OF BILL: To provide real property tax relief to property owners in eligible counties (but not a city with a population of one million or more) whose properties were catastrophically impacted by Hurricane Sandy.

SUMMARY OF SPECIFIC PROVISIONS:

Section 1 contains the title: "Hurricane Sandy Assessment Relief Act."

Section 2 defines the terms used in the act.

Section 3 provides that an eligible county may adopt the provisions of this act by passing a resolution by the forty-fifth day following the date upon which this act is approved by the Governor.

Section 4 provides that any real property that was damaged by Superstorm Sandy and is located within a participating municipality shall be exempt from taxation as stipulated in this section.

Section 5 stipulates where real property was catastrophically impacted by Superstorm Sandy and is located within a participating municipality, assessment relief shall be granted as stipulated in this section.

Section 6 provides that the commissioner of taxation and finance is authorized to develop a guidance memorandum for use by assessing units for purpose of assisting with the implementation of this act and shall be deemed to be advisory on all assessing units in counties which implement the provisions of this act. Such memorandum shall have no force or effect or serve as authority for any other act of assessing units or of the interpretation or implementation of the laws of the state of New York, except as they relate to the specific implementation of this act.

Section 7 of this act would provide that the schools districts be held harmless by the State for any reduction in State Aid that would have been paid as at tax savings pursuant to § 1306-a of the Real Property Tax Law.

Section 8 relates the levy of taxes.

Section 9 relates to the tax savings for each parcel located within an eligible county receiving the exemption authorized by this act and shall be computed by subtracting the amount actually levied against the parcel from the amount that would have been levied if not for the exemption created by this act.

Section 10 provides that any tax savings generated through an exemption created under this act shall be a charge to the participating municipality.

Section 11 relates to Suffolk county financing of refunds and credits.

Section 12 amends paragraph a of section 11.00 of the local finance law by adding a new subdivision 33-b.

Section 13 sets the effective date as immediate and to have been in full force and effect on and after October 28 of 2012.

JUSTIFICATION: Hurricane Sandy caused catastrophic damaged to properties in several counties in New York State. This legislation provides relief in the form of a property tax reduction for those taxpayers in eligible counties whose property was substantially damaged by the storms.

PRIOR LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: None.

FISCAL IMPLICATIONS TO THE STATE: None to the State.

EFFECTIVE DATE: This act shall take effect immediately and shall be deemed to have been in full force and effect on and after October 28 of 2012.


Text

STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ 2121--A Cal. No. 72 2013-2014 Regular Sessions IN SENATE January 11, 2013 ___________
Introduced by Sens. BOYLE, FLANAGAN, FUSCHILLO, HANNON, LARKIN, LAVALLE, MARCELLINO, MARTINS -- read twice and ordered printed, and when print- ed to be committed to the Committee on Local Government -- reported favorably from said committee, ordered to first and second report, ordered to a third reading, amended and ordered reprinted, retaining its place in the order of third reading AN ACT to enact the "Superstorm Sandy assessment relief act"; to amend the local finance law, in relation to certain real property tax refunds and credits THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM- BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS: Section 1. Short title. This act shall be known and may be cited as the "Superstorm Sandy assessment relief act." S 2. Definitions. For the purposes of this act, the following terms shall have the following meanings: 1. "Catastrophically impacted property" shall mean a property which is located in an eligible municipality and which lost at least fifty percent or more of its improved value as a result of Superstorm Sandy. 2. "Eligible county" shall mean those counties which have been included in the federal disaster declarations for Superstorm Sandy, but shall not apply to a county wholly contained within a city. 3. "Eligible municipality" shall mean a municipal corporation, as defined by subdivision 10 of section 102 of the real property tax law, which is either: (a) an eligible county; or (b) a city, town, village, special district, or school district that is wholly or partly contained within an eligible county. 4. "Impacted tax roll" shall mean the final assessment roll which satisfies both of the following conditions: (a) the roll is based upon a taxable status date occurring prior to October 28, 2012; and (b) taxes levied upon that roll by or on behalf of a participating municipality are payable without interest on or after October 28, 2012.
5. "Participating municipality" shall mean an eligible municipality that has passed a local law, ordinance, or resolution pursuant to section three of this act to provide assessment relief to property owners within such eligible municipality pursuant to the provisions of this act. 6. "Superstorm Sandy" shall mean the storms, rains, winds, or floods which occurred within an eligible county during the period beginning on October 29, 2012 and ending November 3, 2012. 7. "Unreimbursed expenses" shall mean all real property expenses incurred as a direct result of Superstorm Sandy with respect to real property located in an eligible municipality, which expenses are not eligible for reimbursement from the state or federal government or an insurance company. Unreimbursed expenses shall be determined with refer- ence to the following: (a) all estimates of damage to real property provided by licensed contractors; (b) receipts; or (c) other written proof reasonably acceptable to the assessor. 8. "Total assessed value", as used in section five of this act, shall mean the total assessed value on the parcel prior to any and all exemption adjustments. 9. "Improved value", as used in section five of this act, shall mean the market value of the real property improvements excluding the land. 10. "Property" shall mean "real property", "property" or "land" as defined under paragraphs (a) through (g) of subdivision 12 of section 102 of the real property tax law. S 3. Local option. An eligible municipality may opt-in to either section four or section five of this act if its governing body shall, by the forty-fifth day following the date upon which this act is approved by the governor, pass a local law, ordinance, or resolution adopting the provisions of this act. S 4. Assessment relief for Superstorm Sandy victims in an eligible county. (a) Notwithstanding any provision of law to the contrary, any real property that was damaged by Superstorm Sandy and is located within a participating municipality shall be exempt from taxation as provided in this section: (i) Real property damaged by Superstorm Sandy shall be exempt from real property taxation to the extent of the amount of unreimbursed expenses the real property owner incurs. The amount of assessed valu- ation exempt from taxation shall be calculated by subtracting the real property owner's unreimbursed expenses from the real property's full value and then multiplying that difference by the level of assessment. (ii) The exemption provided by this section shall be computed before all other partial exemptions allowed by law have been subtracted from the total amount assessed. (iii) This exemption shall only be applied to an impacted tax roll and any assessment roll that becomes final prior to the year 2015. (iv) Notwithstanding any other provision of law concerning a valuation date or a taxable status date, the provisions of this act shall control with respect to the effect of Superstorm Sandy on real property within a participating municipality. (b) Application for the exemption provided by this act must be made with each respective assessor before the first business day in July, 2013 or as provided in the local law, ordinance, or resolution adopting the provisions of this act. The application may include all documenta- tion delineating the applicant's unreimbursed expenses and any proceeds that the applicant has received from the state or federal government or
insurance company for damage that the applicant's property sustained as a result of Superstorm Sandy. (c) Upon receiving such application, the assessor shall determine the amount, if any, of assessed value that is exempt from real property taxation in accordance with the provisions of this section. (d) The assessor shall mail his determination to the applicant. For the purposes of this act only, if the applicant disagrees with the assessor's determination, the applicant may seek judicial review pursu- ant to article 78 of the civil practice law and rules. (e) Any eligible municipality that applies for a community disaster loan through the federal emergency management agency or federal or state grant related to Superstorm Sandy shall provide a copy of such applica- tion to the assessor. S 5. Assessment relief for Superstorm Sandy victims in an eligible county. (a) Notwithstanding any provision of law to the contrary, where real property was catastrophically impacted by Superstorm Sandy and is located within a participating municipality, assessment relief shall be granted as follows: (i) If the property lost at least fifty but less than sixty percent of its improved value due to Superstorm Sandy, the total assessed value of the property shall be reduced by fifty-five percent for purposes of the participating municipality on the impacted tax roll. (ii) If the property lost at least sixty but less than seventy percent of its improved value due to Superstorm Sandy, the total assessed value of the property shall be reduced by sixty-five percent for purposes of the participating municipality on the impacted tax roll. (iii) If the property lost at least seventy but less than eighty percent of its improved value due to Superstorm Sandy, the total assessed value of the property shall be reduced by seventy-five percent for purposes of the participating municipality on the impacted tax roll. (iv) If the property lost at least eighty but less than ninety percent of its improved value due to Superstorm Sandy, the total assessed value of the property shall be reduced by eighty-five percent for purposes of the participating municipality on the impacted tax roll. (v) If the property lost at least ninety but less than one hundred percent of its improved value due to Superstorm Sandy, the total assessed value of the property shall be reduced by ninety-five percent for purposes of the participating municipality on the impacted tax roll. (vi) The percentage loss in improved value for this purpose shall be adopted by the assessor from a written finding of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, or where no such finding exists shall be determined by the assessor in the manner provided by this act, subject to review by the board of assessment review. (vii) No reduction in assessed value shall be granted pursuant to this act except as specified above for such counties. No reduction in assessed value shall be granted pursuant to this section for purposes of any county, city, town, village or school district which has not adopted the provisions of this act. (b) To receive such relief pursuant to this section, the property owner shall submit a written request to the assessor on a form approved by the director of the office of real property tax services within nine- ty days following the date upon which this act is approved by the gover- nor. Such request shall attach any and all determinations by the Federal Emergency Management Agency, and any and all reports by an insurance adjuster, and describe in reasonable detail the damage caused to the property by Superstorm Sandy and the condition of the property following
the superstorm and shall be accompanied by supporting documentation, if available. (c) Upon receiving such a request, the assessor shall adopt the find- ing by the Federal Emergency Management Agency as to whether the proper- ty lost at least half of its improved value as a result of Hurricane Sandy, and if such finding does not exist, the assessor shall make a finding as to whether the property lost at least half of its improved value as a result of Superstorm Sandy, and thereafter the assessor, shall adopt or classify the percentage loss of improved value within one of the following ranges: (i) At least fifty percent but less than sixty percent, (ii) At least sixty percent but less than seventy percent, (iii) At least seventy percent but less than eighty percent, (iv) At least eighty percent but less than ninety percent, or (v) At least ninety percent but less than one hundred percent. (d) The assessor shall mail written notice of such finding to the property owner and the participating municipality. Where the assessor finds that the loss in improved value is less than fifty percent, or classifies the loss within a lower range than the property owner believes is warranted, the property owner may file a complaint with the board of assessment review. Such board shall reconvene upon ten days written notice to the property owner and assessor to hear the appeal and determine the matter, and shall mail written notice of its determination to the assessor and property owner. The provisions of article 5 of the real property tax law shall govern the review process to the extent practicable. The applicant may commence within 30 days of service of a written determination, a real property tax law proceeding under title 1 of article 7 of the real property tax law, or, if applicable, under title 1-A of article 7 of the real property tax law. Sections 727 and 739 of the real property tax law shall not apply. (e) Where property has lost at least fifty percent of its improved value due to Superstorm Sandy, the total assessed value of the property on the impacted assessment roll shall be reduced by the appropriate percentage specified in subdivision (a) of this section, provided that any exemptions which the property may be receiving shall be adjusted as necessary to account for such reduction in the total assessed value. To the extent the total assessed value of the property originally appearing on such roll exceeds the amount to which it should be reduced pursuant to this act, the excess shall be considered an error in essential fact as defined by subdivision 3 of section 550 of the real property tax law. If the error appears on a tax roll, the tax roll shall be corrected in the manner provided by section 554 of the real property tax law or a refund or credit of taxes shall be granted in the manner provided by section 556 or section 556-b of the real property tax law. If the error appears on a final assessment roll but not on a tax roll, such final assessment roll shall be corrected in the manner provided by section 553 of the real property tax law. The errors in essential fact found pursu- ant to the Hurricane Sandy assessment relief act on either the tax roll or final assessment roll, upon application to the county director of real property tax services, shall be forwarded by the county director of real property tax services immediately to the levying body for an imme- diate order setting forth the appropriate correction. (f) The rights contained in this act shall not otherwise diminish any other legally available right of any property owner or party who may otherwise lawfully challenge the valuation or assessment of any real property or improvements thereon. All remaining rights hereby remain and
shall be available to the party to whom such rights would otherwise be available notwithstanding this act. S 6. The commissioner of taxation and finance is authorized to develop a guidance memorandum for use by assessing units. Such guidance memoran- dum shall assist with the implementation of this act and shall be deemed to be advisory on all assessing units in counties which implement the provisions of this act. The guidance memorandum shall have no force or effect or serve as authority for any other act of assessing units or of the interpretation or implementation of the laws of the state of New York except as they relate to the specific implementation of this act. S 7. School districts held harmless. Each school district that is wholly or partially contained within an eligible county shall be held harmless by the state for any reduction in state aid that would have been paid as tax savings pursuant to section 1306-a of the real property tax law incurred due to the provisions of this act. S 8. Levy of taxes; determination of taxes due. The amount of taxes to be levied for any participating municipality located in and including an eligible county that has opted to adopt section four of this act shall be determined without regard to the exemption created under this act. In addition, the tax rate for any participating municipality that has opted to adopt section four of this act shall be determined as if no parcels were exempt from taxation pursuant to this act. However, the tax rate so determined shall be applied to the taxable assessed value of each parcel after accounting for all applicable exemptions, including the exemption created by this act. S 9. Tax savings. (a) The tax savings for each parcel located within an eligible county receiving the exemption authorized by this act shall be computed by subtracting the amount actually levied against the parcel from the amount that would have been levied if not for the exemption created by this act. (b) A statement shall then be placed on the tax bill for the parcel in substantially the following form: "Your tax savings this year resulting from the Superstorm Sandy exemption is $..." S 10. Charge. Any tax savings generated through an exemption created under this act shall be a charge to the participating municipality. S 11. Suffolk County financing of refunds and credits. Payments by Suffolk County for refunds or credits pursuant to this act may be financed pursuant to the local finance law in the same manner, and subject to the same conditions, as amounts authorized under section 3 of the Suffolk County Tax Act to be charged by Suffolk County to towns or special districts or by towns to school districts may be financed pursu- ant to the local finance law. The period of probable usefulness for such payments is hereby determined to be ten years. S 12. Paragraph a of section 11.00 of the local finance law is amended by adding a new subdivision 33-b to read as follows: 33-B. REAL PROPERTY TAX REFUNDS AND CREDITS. PAYMENTS OF EXEMPTIONS, REFUNDS, OR CREDITS FOR REAL PROPERTY TAX, SEWER AND WATER RENTS, RATES AND CHARGES AND ALL OTHER REAL PROPERTY TAXES TO BE MADE BY A MUNICI- PALITY, SCHOOL DISTRICT OR DISTRICT CORPORATION AS A RESULT OF SUPER- STORM SANDY OF TWO THOUSAND TWELVE, TEN YEARS. S 13. This act shall take effect immediately and shall be deemed to have been in full force and effect on and after October 28, 2012.

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