New York's Cooperative and Condominium Community

Habitat Magazine Insider Guide




Deadline for Filing Prevailing Wage Affidavit Extended — Yet Again — to June 30th

New York City

Prevailing wage, co-op and condo property tax abatement, Local 32BJ, non-union workers.
May 23, 2022

Stop me if you've heard this one before. The city's Department of Finance (DOF) has — for the third time — pushed back the deadline for co-op and condo boards to file an affidavit attesting that they are paying their building service employees prevailing wages, a new prerequisite for continuing to receive the co-op and condo property tax abatement. The new deadline is June 30, the last day of the current fiscal year. The new ruling goes into effect during the upcoming fiscal year, which runs from July 1 through June 30, 2023.

"The Department of Finance has been fantastic trying to get everyone into the fold to get the abatement," says Mary Ann Rothman, executive director of the New York Council of Cooperatives & Condominiums.

To that end, the DOF has posted a 30-page list of co-ops and condominiums that are required to file the affidavit and have not yet done so. All buildings on the list must file an affidavit, even if they don't have any employees. That list is available here.

The new rule tying the tax abatement to prevailing wages was signed last Labor Day by Gov. Kathy Hochul. Under it, some 4,000 co-ops and condos are required to file an affidavit if they wish to continue receiving the tax abatement, which ranges from 17.5% for buildings with an average per-unit assessed value greater than $60,000 up to 28.1% for buildings with an average per-unit assessed value of $50,000 or less. Co-ops and condos with employees and an average per-unit assessed value of $60,000 or less are exempt from the prevailing-wage requirement. An affidavit must be filed by properties with 30 or more dwelling units and an average per-unit assessed value of more than $60,000, and by properties with fewer than 30 dwelling units and an average per-unit assessed value of more than $100,000. (Assessed value is part of the equation used to compute a property tax bill; it is less than the market value.)

Prevailing wages are set each year by the city Comptroller. Co-ops and condos with building staffers who are members of the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) remain eligible for the tax abatement because they are already paying prevailing wages. Buildings with non-unionized staffers or with members of other unions frequently pay less than prevailing wage — and thus must decide if they want to boost pay in order to retain the tax abatement. Many have decided to forego the abatement. This has been an especially wrenching decision for many co-op boards, which frequently assessed shareholders for the amount of the abatement and then funneled the money into the operating budget. Now they must figure out a way to overcome the revenue shortfall.

In related news, the rank-and-file in Local 32BJ of the SEIU have voted "overwhelmingly" to accept the new four-year contract that was hammered out shortly before the previous contract expired on April 20, according to the union. The contract provides a 12.75% pay increase over the duration of the contract and, crucially, preserves employer-paid health benefits for members and their families. The union has more than 30,000 members staffing more than 3,000 buildings in Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens and Staten Island.

Ask the Experts

learn more

Learn all the basics of NYC co-op and condo management, with straight talk from heavy hitters in the field of co-op or condo apartments

Professionals in some of the key fields of co-op and condo board governance and building management answer common questions in their areas of expertise

Source Guide

see the guide

Looking for a vendor?