Queens property owners who have long felt the city’s property tax codes have long been unfair and in need of reform will have a chance to weigh in with ideas on how to fix the system when the city’s Property Tax Reform Commission comes to the borough on Wednesday for a public hearing.

    The de Blasio Administration along with the City Council recently appointed the nine-person commission to put together a set of recommendations for city elected officials on how to make the system more fair, while at the same time ensuring there is no reduction in revenue used to pay for key city services.

    The advisory commission’s comprehensive review includes: evaluations of the tax classification system; the methods of determining property market values and assessments; the treatment of property value increases; relief for low-income and senior homeowners; and method of calculating tax rates.

    The commission will solicit public input by holding at least ten public hearings and will review comparable property tax systems from other cities. The commission’s recommendations may include changes that could be made at the City level, as well as those that would require state legislation.

    QCP recently spoke with Commission Co-Chair Marc V. Shaw about the current tax codes and what can be done to reform it.

    Under the city’s current property tax system, how much homeowners pay is based on the assessed value of one-, two-, and three-family homes — known as Class 1 properties. That rate can’t go up more than 6 percent every year or 20 percent over five years.

    Shaw explained how the city’s current property tax codes were set with state legislation in 1981 in a four class system with the main class being. As such much of what has to be changed must be done on the state level, but Shaw noted the city still is the municipal power to set the tax rate along with administrative rules with the Department of Finance.

    Property taxes is the largest source of revenue for the city and generated about $28 billion to the city’s current fiscal year 2019 budget.

    Of all the borough’s Queens has the most single family homes including a large portion of Eastern Queens in such neighborhoods as Little Neck and Bayside. There are also a growing number of residents in co-ops and condos, particularly in Wetsern Queens such as Long Island City.

    Among these, who recent put forth a plan for property tax reform is Staten Island Assemblywoman Nicole Malliotakis and you can see her plan here.

    The queens public hearing before the Property Tax Commission is slated for 6:30 p.m., this Wednesday, October 3 at York College’s Milton G. Bassin Performing Arts Center, 94-45 Guy R. Brewer Boulevard in Jamaica.


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