County Executive signs Property Tax Relief Law

New Law Will Complement The Already Existing New York State Executive Order That Allowed  Latimer To Remove Property Tax Late Fees For County Residents And Businesses

Westchester County Executive George Latimer was joined by Board of Legislators Chairman Ben Boykin and fellow County Legislators for the virtual signing of a new property tax relief measure to help Westchester taxpayers facing financial difficulty this year because of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

The new law compliments the Executive Order Latimer was granted by Governor Andrew Cuomo to go forward with his plan to remove late fees for County residents and business for the late payment of their property taxes (New York State Executive Order No. 202.22). The bill authorizes towns to reduce late-payment penalties for all other town property tax payers, regardless of specific hardship qualification, by as much as 80 percent through July 15.

Latimer said: “I want to thank Governor Cuomo for recognizing the need to help Westchester residents and businesses, and I want to thank the County Board of Legislators for providing an additional level of relief. I am concerned about the financial pressures that the residents of this County are under.  This is the right thing to do for our constituents. Additionally, the bi-partisan cooperation shown between County, town and city leaders, with the support off our State Legislators, including Assemblyman David Buchwald and Senator Pete Harckham, showed a willingness to work together not often seen in government.”

Westchester County Board of Legislators Chairman Ben Boykin said: “This is a public health emergency and economic crisis that has touched every corner of this County and I'm thankful that the Governor, the County Executive, our state representatives, my colleagues on the Board of Legislators and all our municipal officials have been able to work together quickly to provide programs that provide no penalties and /or substantially reduced penalties for taxpayers in Westchester County.”

To provide assistance to the cities and towns that collect these taxes, the Executive Order allows for the County Executive to accept less than 60% of the taxes (along with special ad valorem levies and special assessments) due on May 25 from towns and cities, as long as the municipalities waive residents’ late fees for the late payment of property taxes up to July 15, 2020.

This two-pronged tax relief program, developed through the cooperation of state, county and municipal officials, will provide meaningful relief on both a targeted and broad basis to Westchester taxpayers struggling through this challenging time.

Latimer said: “This legislation passed by the Westchester County Board of Legislators is a safety net for those County residents who are suffering during the COVID-19 pandemic, but don’t meet the criteria for ‘economic hardship.’  Now those who are sick, or occupied with responding to the pandemic will have a reduced late fee for a delayed payment of their property taxes.”

View County Executive George Latimer’s full briefing at this link:

Submitted by Somers, NY

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