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Release Date: May 31, 2006


Our Commercial/Industrial and Utility Tax Base continue to decline.  For example, in 1984 utilities were valued town wide at $44,704,746.  Today, they are valued at $14,947,121 – a drop of 2/3rds.  As a result of this drop, taxes for residential property owners have gone up.

As commercial properties win certiorari actions, residential property owners are seeing their taxes increase by larger amounts.  Some people suggest that local governments take on the responsibility of a reassessment.  Reassessment, in my opinion, would be much more cost effective if done at the county level.  Is there another solution?  YES. 

The Assembly, Senate and the Governor have the power to allow each local municipality to establish a system of Classification without first conducting a reassessment.  As a result of the landmark 1981 decision known as “ Hellerstein”, our leaders in Albanycreated a Tax Classification system for New York Cityand NassauCounty.  Now after 25 years of political stagnation, decline and erosion of our tax base, residential property owners are being disproportionately loaded with taxes.  It is time for Albanyto allow the rest of the state to enjoy the benefits of Classification allowed to New York Cityand NassauCounty.  Classification would establish a residential class and a commercial class of properties.  If commercial properties file an action and win the action their taxes would be reduced.  But, since the percentage of the taxes paid by commercial properties would stay the same – there would not be a shift to residential owners.  

Lobbying for Tax Classification is a solution appropriate for our time.  It can help our school districts.  I would welcome your input and would be more than happy to help coordinate a statewide lobbying initiative.  If you would be interested in participating in a lobbying effort to persuade the state to change the law to allow for classifications please complete the following form and return to me.


Paul J. Feiner


(  )        Yes. I would like to get involved in the effort to persuade the NY State Legislature

to authorize local governments to have tax classification.  This law would be helpful to residential property owners.


Name:                         ____________________________________________________


Address:                    ____________________________________________________


E-mail:                        ____________________________________________________


Phone:                        ____________________________________________________

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