State Supreme Court Declares Revenue-Raising Fees Unconstitutional

Reclaim New York Initiative offered the following statement on a New York State Supreme Court decision that declared the use of excessive fees to raise revenue for general fund expenditures unconstitutional (Coma Realty Corp. v. James E. David, Acting County Assessor of Nassau County, the County of Nassau, and the Nassau County Legislature):

“This is a major victory for taxpayers, homeowners, businesses, and any New Yorker who has been forced to pay an illegal fee.”The law says these fees are illegal, the State Supreme Court says they are illegal. There is no question that revenue-grabbing fees are illegal. The only question is when governments abusing the practice will be caught.

“Nassau and Suffolk legislators have knowingly been stealing from residents with illegal fees. Nassau was the first to be caught, Suffolk will be next. They should remove these fees from their budgets now, and have an honest discussion about their finances.

“Every government around the state should get the message loud and clear. Illegal fees are theft. It is time to end illegal fees across New York.”