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Suffern and Ramapo Win Tax Case Against Suffern’s Top Taxpayer, Major Win for Residents

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SUFFERN, NY – The Town of Ramapo and the Village of Suffern announced a major victory in a tax assessment case that will help save their residents a significant amount of money. The legal case centered around the old Novartis Pharmaceutical facility; a 167-acre property located on Old Mill Road in Suffern, as well as other parcels located in Suffern and Montebello. The combined properties make them the top taxpayer in Suffern and one of Ramapo’s biggest taxpayers.

Suffern Partners, LLC, which purchased the complex in 2017 for $30 million, had been challenging its nearly $4.8 million assessment since 2019. The company maintained that the total assessment of the combined parcels should be $696,000. The proposed reduction in 2020 sought by Suffern Partners, LLC, from $41 million to $6 million for the fair market value of the parcels, equals an 85% reduction in its assessment. If the company was successful in its challenge, it would result in $1.36 million in refunds that would have to be spread to the tax bills of other Ramapo residents, thereby leading to a significant tax increase.

In March 2020, the Town became aware that Suffern Partners, LLC had entered into a contract to sell the property the property for a whopping $55 million, yet the company continued to bring its tax grievance complaint against the Town. Suffern Partners, LLC failed to notify the Town of the impending sale, which it was required to do. Instead, the company continued pursuing legal action against the Town, even though the contract price was approximately $14 million higher than the current market value of $41 million.

When the Town discovered the existence of the sales contract and the company’s willful neglect to duly notify the Town, its attorney Dylan C. Harris of Lewis & Greer, P.C., filed a motion to dismiss Suffern Partners, LLC’s lawsuit. The Town recently received a signed stipulation of discontinuance, which is tantamount to an acknowledgment by Suffern Partners, LLC that it failed to comply with the NYS Real Property Tax Law and effectively ends the company’s legal challenge once and for all.

“This is a huge victory for the average taxpayer in Ramapo and Suffern,” said Ramapo Supervisor Michael B. Specht. “Suffern Partners, LLC exhibited egregious behavior throughout this process and acted in bad faith as they attempted to save millions in taxes that they legally owed. This is a company that tried to exploit the system without any regard for the adverse economic impact it would have on our Town and Village residents, and we are pleased that justice prevailed. Ramapo taxpayers should never have to foot the bill for a big business that seeks to gain a financial advantage through underhanded and unpardonable means.”

“We are very grateful that this unfortunate matter has finally come to an end and that the positive outcome will benefit taxpayers throughout Suffern and Ramapo,” said Suffern Mayor Edward Markunas. “By working together with the Town of Ramapo to fight on behalf of our residents against a greedy company that attempted to take advantage of the system through a frivolous legal action, we were thankfully able to score a big win for the people of Suffern and Ramapo and protect our taxpayers’ pocketbooks.”

Photo credit Village of Suffern/Facebook.

Government

Rep. Mondaire Jones on Build Back Better Act

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Congressman Mondaire Jones (D-NY) released the following statement:

“Today is an historic day for our nation, and for the great people of Westchester and Rockland Counties. Thanks to the leadership of progressives—who insisted on passing not just the bipartisan infrastructure bill, but also the larger Build Back Better Act—the House passed the most significant investment in our nation and our people in more than half a century.

The bill will guarantee that high-quality child care is affordable for every family in America; save the planet from climate catastrophe while creating millions of good-paying, union jobs; expand Medicare to include hearing; continue to cut child poverty in half through an extension of the expanded Child Tax Credit; make an historic investment in housing affordability; lift the cap on the State and Local Tax deduction that has unjustly burdened working families in Westchester and Rockland; and so much more.

I’m especially proud that this bill contains key provisions that I led the fight to secure: universal child care and an increase in the SALT deduction cap to $80,000.

This victory is a testament to the strength and tenacity of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, of which I’m proud to be a Deputy Whip, and which held the line throughout this process to ensure we passed a bill that meets this unprecedented moment of overlapping crises.

We in the House have done our job, and now our colleagues in the Senate must do theirs. I look forward to President Biden making good on his promise to secure 51 votes for the Build Back Better Act in the Senate expeditiously so we can get this bill onto his desk and begin delivering the change people in Westchester, Rockland, and across America need and deserve. The American people are counting on us to deliver, and we must do so without delay.”

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Government

End of the Village of South Nyack: Village Hall is Up For Sale

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End of the Village of South Nyack: Village Hall is Up For Sale.

 

After a referendum, residents of South Nyack voted to disband and join the Town of Orangetown.

This article will be updated when a price is listed for the Village Hall.

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