Dems won’t sue Rye over tiki tax

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The Democratic leaders of the Westchester County Board of Legislators won’t sue the City of Rye over new property  taxes at Playland Park.
In an announcement this evening, they said the Pier Restaurant and Tiki Bar, a privately owned and operated business, should pay the nearly $30,000 tax tab that Rye wants to assess on the county.
“We have no intention of bringing any of our municipalities to court where the only prospect is to simply create even more conflict and discord,” said board Chairman Ken Jenkins, D-Yonkers. “A resolution to this tax question is already at hand: The contract with the tiki bar plainly states that they are responsible for any taxes that may be charged.”

County Executive Rob Astorino had asked the board to approve a suit in an effort to “defend” itself against the new tax after Rye this year added the Tiki Bar to the assessment role. Earlier this year, Rye assessed the property at $33,600, which translates into a $1.5 million market value. Last month it denied the county’s bid for an exemption on the grounds that it was “private commercial use as a stand alone bar restaurant.”

Astorino’s chief adviser said yesterday that the city could not carve out taxing entities at parks; they’re public land and therefore exempt.

Two board committees yesterday moved the Astorino Administration’s request for authorization of a lawsuit against the Rye for consideration, but the request will not be approved and moved forward.

“We can find an amicable solution to this issue without bringing it into the legal arena,” said Vice Chairman Lyndon Williams, D- Mount Vernon.

Legislator Judy Myers, D-Larchmont, called Astorino’s request “political hypocrisy.”

“It’s hard to believe that the county executive and his staff seem eager about going to get into court on this issue,” she said.

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7 Comments

  1. Democrats on the County Board never saw a tax they didn’t like, even when someone else is collecting it.

  2. The Republicans that control the City of Rye assessed a tax on a private business. A business that has nothing to do with the park. The Republican County Executive wanted the County Board to authorize a lawsuit against a municipality.

    The Democrats did the right thing, shame on Astorino for asking to sue a municipality.

  3. Like I said, the Dems on the County Board never saw a tax they didn’t like. And any “Republican” in Rye who votes to tax everything that moves or crawls, is not a Republican at all and should call the Spano brothers to find out how to change his/her enrollment to the Party of Tax.

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  5. Dumb Not Astute on

    Here’s the real DNA: Rye City – 5 Republicans on the 7 member council – wants to treat The Tiki Bar like every other business. They know that a restaurant paying taxes like every other restaurant limits how much Rye City property taxpayers will have to pay. And, DNA, the Rye Republicans – including Suzanna Keith, Astorino’s candidate for Legislator – kept property tax increase under 1%.

    If you think that’s not a Republican way to go, then you are indeed DNA=Dumb, Not Astute.

  6. Whatever it is you’re babbling about, translate it into logical English and tell it to the Spanos, not to me.