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Real estate record and builders' guide: v. 25, no. 641: June 26, 1880

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Real Estate Record AND BUILDERS' GUIDE. Vol. XXV. NEW YOKE, SATUEDAY, JUNE 26, 1880. No. 641 Published Weekly by Cbe Eeal Estate J^ecorb Association. TEBMS. ONE YEAR., in advance.. ..SIO.OO. Communicationa should be addres.sed to C. W. SWEET. No. 137 Broadwav THE REMEDY FOR OVER ASSESSMENTS. When Mr. Geo^ Hi Andrews^ in his letter to the Times^ on Wednesday, sit>oke of tbe remedies for oVet^ dsBBsstttents, he did not have in his mind the hB^ law crea.ting a Board of Revisiooj printed in Thk JElECoRD several weeks agoi but the law which is to day published foi* the first time in these ttolumns. This iiw affects the owners of real estati^ throbghout the whole State of New York, While the ohe Creating the Boatd of Revision is Uf interest prihcipally to West Side lot owners. "The law glassed On the 12th of May; and published to-day, is Considered the most important tax-act pflissed during the recent session of the Legisla- tui'e. It provides that all assessment rolls, when completed, verified and delivered to the authority specified % MvV, shall remain for a period of fifteen days for public inspection. The assessing officers in this city—the Tax Commissioners— shall forthwith give public notice that such as¬ sessment roll has been " finally completed," and the place where the same will be open to public inspection. During the fifteen days after such public notice has been given, a writ of certiorari may be allowed by the Supreme Court on the pt - titiou of any person or corporation assessed, and claiming to be aggrieved, to review any assess¬ ment of real or personal property, when the pet i- tion shall set forth that the assessment is illegal, " or is erroneous by reason of overvaluation, or is unequal, in that the assessment has been made at a higher proportionate valuation than other real or personal property on tho same roll by the same officers." Mr. Andrews, ia explaining the provisions of this new law, claims tbat the words quoted above are grounds upon which a revision has not here' tofore been allowed by the courts, and it is pro¬ vided that this act shall not be construed to re¬ peal or abridge any other right or remedy. There are various provisions for ascertaining facts by taking testimony, and for giving effect to tbe revised and corrected assessment, and sev¬ eral persons when affected in the same manner anay unite in one petition to the court. As the daily papers have been very derelict in rpublishing the various new laws affecting prop- ■erty in this city and State, we advise our readers .and subscribers to carefully retain the various numbers of The Record containing these new :statutes, as they will surely be wanted for con- .stant reference during the next ensuing six ^months. Tieasury hot at all wailted there, more in fact than is called for by the varioWs appfopl*iati'in bills. True, the result will be felt next year when we may look confidently toward a heavy decline in tbe rate of taxation, but the idea of raising a surplus for the public treasury is an unwise piece of legislation and thoroughly destructive of the principles of true economy that ought to underlie the control of public affairs. We print in another column the letter of a gentleman, who is enthusiastic fur Port Morris as the proper site to be selected for the World's Fair of 188.3. tt is but right that those who have anything to sfly fit all in regdrd to certain localities should say it nov^, as the commission which is to select a site will probablj- meet dur¬ ing tbe coming month of July. Port Morris and vicinity certainly have many advantages that can not be found elsewhere, as will be >een by the letter and circular printed in atiother column. At the same time, the great objection to dealing with individual owners, as made in these columns a week ago, is overcome by the fact that there is only a single party—the Improvement Company —to be dealt with. We may add, however, that the officers of this company are not over-anxious to part with their property even for five years on the favorable terms of non-taxation during that time, offered tbem by law. T&ey now feel so strongly the active impetus of improvements all around tbat they fear ihat any artificial improve¬ ment, which after all is only temporary, may be detrimental to the sure, steady but ultimate grand improvement of the entire section. Con¬ sidering, however, the natural advantages oft'ered at Port Morris aud vicinity, the points put for¬ ward by our correspondent are certainly worthy of due deliberation on the part of the eommis- • sioners, and that too at tbeir very first meeting. LAWS OF NEW YORK, 1830. CHAPTER 269 An Act to provide for the review and correction of illegal, erroneous or unequal assessments. Passed May isJ, 18S0; three fifths being present. The People of the State of New York, represent¬ ed in Senate and Assembly, do enact as fol¬ lows : Section I. A writ of certiorari may be allowed by the supreme court on the petition, duly veri¬ fied, of any person or corporation assessed and claiming to be aggrieved, to review an assess¬ ment ol real or personal property for the purpose of taxation made in any town, ward, village or city of this State, when tbe petition shall set forth that tbe assessment is illegal, specifying the grounds of the alleged illegality, or is erroneous by reason of over valuation, or is unequal in that the assessment has been made at a higher propor¬ tionate valuation lhan other real or personal property on the same roll by the same officers, and that the petitioner is or will be injured by such alleged illegal, erroneous or unequal assess¬ ment. When the alleged illegality, error or in¬ equality affects several persons in the same man- Instead of reforming the tax laws of our State ^upon a basis of equal justice to the State as weU as to the tax-payer, the various new laws enacted dufingjthe last session of the legislature will Jiftve the effect of dragging money into thg State judicial district in which the assessment com^ plained of was made, and shall be made return¬ able at a special term in said districts The writ shall not be granted unless ai plication therefor shall be made within fifteen days after the com¬ pletion and delivery of the assessment roll, and notice thereof given as provided in this act. A writ of certiorari allowed under this act shall not stay the proceedings of the assessors or other ofii- cers to whom it is directed, or to whom the assess¬ ment roll may be delivered to be acted upon according to law. Sec. 3. The ccmrt or justice granting the writ shall prescribe iu the writ the time within which a return thereto must be made, which shall not he less than ten days, and may extend such time. The assessors or other officers making a return to such writ shall not be required to return the orig¬ inal assessment roll or other original papers acted on by them, but it shall t e sufficienL to returo certified or sworn copies of the roll or other papers, or of such portions thereof as may be called for by such writ. And the return may c-oncisely set forth such other facts as may be pertinent and material to show the value of the property assessed on the roll, and the grounds for the valuation made by tbe assessing officers, and tbe return must be verified. Stc. 4. If it shall appear by the return to such writ that the assessment complained of is illegal, erroneous or unequal for any of the rea.-ions al¬ leged in the petition, the court shall have power to-order such assessment, if illegal, to be stricken from the roll, or if erroneous or unequal, to order a reassessment of the property of the petitioner, or the correction of such assessment,, in whole or in part, in such manner as shall De in accordance with law, or as shall make it conform to the valu¬ ations and assessments applied to other real or personal uroperty in the same roll, and secure equality of assessment. If upon the hearing it shall appear to tbe court that testimony is ueces- sar.v for the proper disposition of the matter, the court may take evidence or may appoint a referee to take such evidence as the court may direct, and report the same to the court, and such testi¬ mony shall constitute a part of tbe proceedings upon which the determination of the coiirt shall be made. Sec. b, A new assessment, or correction of an assessment made by order of the court, shall bave the same force and effect as if it had been so made by the proper assessing officers witbin the time originally prescribed by law for making such assessment. Disobedience to a writ or order in any proceeding under this act may be punished by the court as for a contempt. Sec. 6. Costs shall not be allowed against as¬ sessors or other officers whose proceedings may be reviewed under this act, unless it shall appear to the court that they acted with gross negligence, in bad faith, or with malice. If the writ shall be quashed, or the prayer of the petitioner denied, costs shall be awarded against the petitioner, but tbe costs shall not in any case exceed the costs and disbursements taxable in an action upon the trial of an issue of fact in the supreme court. Skc 7. Appeal may be taken by either party from an order, judgn.ent or determination under this act as from an order, and shall be heard and determined in like manner. All issues andappea s in any proceedings instituted under this act shall have preference over ali other civil actions and proceedings in all courts. Sec 8. If final judgment shall not be given m time to enable the assessors or other officers to make a new or corrected assessment for tbe use of the board of supervisors at tbeir annual session, and it sball appear from said judgment that said assessment was illegal, erroneous or unequal, then there shall be audited and allowed to the peti- ner wbo are assessed upon the same roll, they tuoio autiix .^v. ..--------------------_ i '»t nf may unite in the same petition, and in that case tioner, and included in the next year s tax levy oi the writ may be allowed, and the proceedings said town, village or city, and paid to tne pen- authorized by this act had in behalf of all such tioner the amount, with interest thereon, trom tne petitioners. date of payment, in excess of what the tax should Sec. 2. Such writ shall only be allowed by a have been as determmed by such oudgment or justice of the sunreme court in the judicial dis- order of the court. ^ „ , « „n..^ „„„ trict or at a special term ot the court in the ' Sec. 9. AU assessment roUs, when finally com.