May 31, 2018 | Featured, News

The Commission, announced by Mayor de Blasio and Speaker Johnson, will develop proposals to make property taxes more fair, straightforward, and transparent

Today, Mayor de Blasio and Council Speaker Johnson announced the formation of a new advisory commission, co-chaired by Vicki Been and Marc Shaw, to develop recommendations to reform New York City’s property tax system to make it simpler, clearer, and fairer, while ensuring that there is no reduction in revenue used to fund essential City services. The commission will solicit input from the public by holding at least 10 public hearings. The last in-depth review of the system by a government-appointed commission was in 1993.

The Commissioner of the Department of Finance Jacques Jiha, Director of the Office of Management and Budget Melanie Hartzog, Director of the City Council Finance Division Latonia McKinney, and Deputy Director and Chief Economist Council Finance Division Raymond Majewski will serve as non-voting ex-officio members.

“To be the fairest big city, you need a fair tax system. For too long, New York City taxpayers have had to grapple with a property tax system that is too opaque, too complex, and just feels unfair,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio. “New Yorkers need property tax reform, and this advisory commission will put us on the road to achieve it.”

“This is an important first step towards addressing inequities in this city’s broken property tax system. It is crucial that we work to bring clarity and fairness to this process, which has long perplexed the public and left many feeling hoodwinked by the city government tasked with representing them. The Council looks forward to rolling up our sleeves and addressing this long-standing problem,” said Council Speaker Corey Johnson.

Vicki Been is the Boxer Family Professor of Law at NYU School of Law, an Affiliated Professor of Public Policy of the NYU Wagner Graduate School of Public Service and Faculty Director of NYU’s Furman Center for Real Estate and Urban Policy. Previously Been served for three years as Commissioner of Housing Preservation and Development for the City of New York, where she led the 2400-person agency in: designing and implementing Housing New York, a comprehensive strategy for addressing the City’s need for affordable housing. Been has written extensively about New York City’s property tax system and its primary abatement and exemption programs.

Marc V. Shaw is the Interim Chief Operating Officer for CUNY. Shaw also serves as the Senior Advisor to the Chancellor for Budget, Finance, and Fiscal Policy, as well as Chair of the CUNY Institute for State and Local Governance.  Previously, he served as a Senior Advisor to Governor David Paterson, Executive Vice President for Strategic Planning at Extell Development Company and First Deputy Mayor to Michael Bloomberg.

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