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politics

Tax Relief Available For Westchester Properties Damaged by Sandy

Assemblyman David Buchwald sponsored a bill that will allow for adjustments on tax bills for properties destroyed or damaged by Superstorm Sandy.
Assemblyman David Buchwald sponsored a bill that will allow for adjustments on tax bills for properties destroyed or damaged by Superstorm Sandy. Photo Credit:

WESTCHESTER COUNTY, N.Y. -- A bill that will allow for adjustments on tax bills for properties destroyed or damaged by Superstorm Sandy recently was signed into law by Gov. Andrew Cuomo.

The Superstorm Sandy Assessment Relief Act was sponsored by state Assemblyman David Buchwald, D-Westchester.

“This legislation provides much-needed property tax relief to families in Westchester County that are still trying to recover from the effects of Superstorm Sandy and rebuild their homes and lives,” Buchwald said in a prepared statement. “This new law is about providing fairness.”

The law allows municipalities to lower the 2012-13 tax assessment of properties that lost a certain percentage of their structural value due to the storm. The program can be adopted by counties, towns, cities, villages and school districts in the affected areas.

This law is necessary because within the tax law a deadline exists for local governments to finalize assessments and determine tax bills. This deadline had since expired, prohibiting local governments from altering assessments. The law changes this to give local governments in storm-affected areas the ability to lower tax assessments so they aren't based on pre-Sandy values.

“Making sure we enacted this legislation was imperative for the families in New York that have already lost so much as a result of Superstorm Sandy,” Buchwald said in the statement.

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