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Spano getting tough with real estate scofflaws

Yonkers Mayor Mike Spano speaks about budget issues

Yonkers Mayor Mike Spano speaks about budget issues at Yonkers City Hall. (July 30, 2012) Photo Credit: Nancy Siesel

Yonkers Mayor Mike Spano is getting tough with tax cheats, vowing to go after city property owners who owe tens of thousands of dollars in unpaid real estate transfer taxes.

In Yonkers, homeowners are required to pay a transfer tax amounting to 1.5 percent of a property's final sale price, but Spano said 47 property owners are delinquent on $643,667 in outstanding taxes on purchases dating back to July 2009.

"Time has come for this to stop," Spano said in a statement Thursday. "I've called upon our legal and finance teams to aggressively pursue these property owners so we can collect money rightfully owed to the city."

Spano said the city has whittled down the delinquent list from 123 property owners, collecting $294,333 since November.

Yonkers also has reached out to the Westchester County clerk's office to assist with enforcement of the real estate transfer tax, asking them to refuse recording any deeds without proof that the levy had been paid.

The city requires transfer taxes to be paid within a week. Sales under $25,000 are exempt.

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