Mar 02, 2012
To the Editor,
Well! Well! It is Election Year 2012 and who would one imagine would emerge into the sunlight? It is Fran Becker. In the last two years, I have had two occasions to speak directly to Legislator Becker. One instance was in his campaign office during his unsuccessful attempt to unseat Representative McCarthy. The other was in a telephone call I received about a year ago from Mr. Becker. In both instances he was seeking information about the flood insurance problem facing many of his constituents.
Of course, Mr. Becker already knew something about the problem, as he attended a community meeting at Valley Stream Central High School when FEMA representatives were present. Of course, it was an election year back then and like other of nature’s entities, that arise at certain calendrical times, election years can count on the emergence of Fran Becker.
In the past, I and others opposing FEMA and its horrendous attack on homeowners in South Nassau, have explained our complaints against FEMA. I went one step further and even mentioned suggestions in letters to the local press. I have suggested in the past that Legislator Becker propose tax relief for the “victims” of FEMA’s onerous rules and regulations. FEMA’s acts of labeling properties as part of the “AE” flood zone have decimated the marketability of those properties and encumbered them with mandatory flood insurance costs on homes that have outstanding liens or acquire such liens in the event that are somehow sold to others. AND STILL THE COUNTY’S TAX ASSESSMENT CRITERIA DO NOT RECOGNIZE THE DAMAGE DONE TO THE VALUE OF THOSE PROPERTIES IN FORMULATING ITS ANNUAL TAX ASSESSMENTS. THE COUNTY CONTINUES TO COLLECT TAXES ON THOSE PROPERTIES AS THOUGH NOTHING HAS INTERVENED TO ADVERSELY AFFECT THE VALUE OF THOSE PROPERTIES. THE COUNTY CONTINUES TO REAP THE BENEFITS OF PROPERTIES THAT NO LONGER HAVE ANYWHERE NEAR THE VALUE AND MARKETABILITY USED BY THE COUNTY FOR THE COLLECTION OF TAX REVENUES.
My suggestions to Becker and other local officials to take remedial action with local taxes to ameliorate the extraordinary, unfair financial burden placed on the victims of FEMA have gone ignored.
However, it is election year again and here comes Becker. I understand that he is going to conduct a legislative hearing on this issue. Generally, this is done to gather information to ascertain a course of action. Of course, Mr. Becker over two years have elapsed since this issue was brought to your doorstep. I, for one, am no longer interested in ascertaining facts and proposing courses of action. I would suggest to Mr. Becker’s constituents that if he really wants our consideration for his political aspirations or our appreciation for his performance in his present elective position, he should take the following suggestion seriously. Mr. Becker, it is nine months until election time and it is just after the election that FEMA’s two year freeze of flood insurance rates will expire with the expectation that those rates will resume at phenomenally high levels.
Mr. Becker, if you want me to take you seriously, you have nine months to enact meaningful tax relief for the “victims” of FEMA. Meaningful tax relief would at least attempt to restore the marketability of properties victimized by FEMA flood designations and would offer some assistance to those facing heavy financial burdens created by those flood designations. Otherwise, I will just continue to view you, as I currently do, and that is with respect to Fran Becker, beneath the tinsel is the real tinsel.
Joseph B. Margolin
Filed Under: Letters to the Editor
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