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Long IslandColumnistsRick Brand

Suffolk County fees burden homeowners’ associations, lawyer says

Attorney Marc Schneider called it “an unintended consequence.”

Schneider, who represents more than 100 homeowners’ associations islandwide, said a local law that last year raised fees for tax map verifications from $60 to $200 has resulted in associations being hit with bills as high as $40,000 for things as simple as changing notices for governing board meetings.

Testifying at a public hearing last week, Schneider said the problem is that Suffolk’s law charges its $200 fee for each unit in the development any time an association changes its rules.

“If you have a homeowners association with 200 units, that makes the fees as high as $40,000,” Schneider said.

He said Nassau County charges by the entire development, keeping the fees to a few hundred dollars to less than $1,000.

Schneider said the fees originally were aimed at transactions in which a new development is created. He said he had hoped that the county would exempt homeowners associations from the fees.

But Schneider praised county Legis. William Lindsay III (D-Bohemia), who has proposed a $5,000 cap on such fees. A legislative vote on the bill is likely in September.

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