20 Aug 2014
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Patch Instagram photo by millibaby95

After Report Says Taxpayers Were Overcharged, What Next?

The Dept. of Finance overcharged as many as 10 percent of Queens co-op buildings, according to an audit.

After Report Says Taxpayers Were Overcharged, What Next?

A group of apartment dwellers say they have ignited a grassroots movement to correct property tax assessments that departed from the Dept. of Finance's own formula.

The Dept. of Finance told investigators from Comptroller John Liu's office that it “already ensures that properties are valued properly and does not agree that properties were over-assessed or under-assessed simply because there is a from year to year.”

Liu's office revealed findings on Friday that as many as 10 percent of the borough’s 859 co-op buildings received much higher property values than the Dept. of Finance's own formula should have allowed.

His office said the DOF did not explain the departure from their formula.

But a group of co-op and condo owners say they are not not taking litigation off the table, according to Co-op and Condo Presidents Council attorney .

"Now we’re armed with facts and figures, we’re going to lobby," said Mazel, adding, "If litigation is necessary, we’ll . It’s a grassroots movement."

A movement, he says, drew as many as 900 people to a at North Shore Towers on Thursday night.

With the outsider perspective of a single family home owner, Bayside Hills Civic Association President Michael Feiner, asked Patch if the Dept. of Investigation would be doing their own investigation to assess wrongdoing.

The DOI committed only to reviewing the Comtroller's audit, as "all Comptroller audits referred to DOI are reviewed," according to a spokesperson.

A spokesman for Council Member Dan Halloran, R-Whitestone, said his office would be crafting legislation to make the whole process more transparent.

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