Property owners who suffered severe damage from Superstorm Sandy would get some relief under proposals being pushed by state and federal legislators.
Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, D-Manhattan, introduced legislation to provide property tax relief to New York City homeowners and businesses who suffered losses due to Sandy. Assemblyman Robert Sweeney, D-Lindenhurst, is expected to introduce twin legislation for communities outside of New York City that were declared disaster areas, which would include Westchester, Rockland and Putnam counties.
Similar to laws enacted last year after Hurricane Irene, Tropical Storm Lee and the Halloween snowstorm, the new legislation would allow property owners with heavy losses to have their property assessments reduced in the current year, lowering their property tax bills.
The assessment reduction would only apply to property owners that lost at least 50 percent of assessed value as a result of Sandy and would be applied on a sliding scale.
- 50 percent but less than 60 percent loss in value, taxable assessed value would be reduced by 55 percent;
- 60 percent but less than 70 percent loss in value, taxable assessed value would be reduced by 65 percent;
- 70 percent but less than 80 percent loss in value, taxable assessed value would be reduced by 75 percent;
- 80 percent but less than 90 percent loss in value, taxable assessed value would be reduced by 85 percent;
- 90 percent but less than 100 percent loss in value, taxable assessed value would be reduced by 95 percent; and
- 100 percent loss, taxable assessed value would be reduced to zero.
More than 300,000 homes were damaged or destroyed by Hurricane Sandy.
Last week, U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer proposed legislation that would allow Sandy victims to deduct repairs and other costs from their 2012 federal tax returns. Homeowners who housed victims temporarily (at least 60 days) would also get tax breaks as would businesses who kept workers on the payroll.