"Co-op/Condo Ombudsman Bill" in NYS Senate


I came across this interesting article stating there is currently a bill in the New York State Senate proposing the creation of an Ombudsman for co-ops and condos in the state.

The office would be funded through a new tax of $6 added to the fees paid by each co-op and condo unit.

The ombuds office would oversee board elections, use ADR services such as mediation for disputes, have the authority to subpoena and hold hearings, give public talks, host meetings as well as raise awareness of rights and responsibilities.

Read the article [here].

From the NYS Senate website [here], it shows the sponsor of the bill is State Senator Liz Kruger of Manhattan. Currently, I am unaware if there is a similar Bill in the Assembly.

Some important facts from the Bill:

-"The bill creates the Office of the Cooperative and Condominium Ombudsman within the Department of Law to serve as a neutral, informative, and accessible resource available to cooperative and condominium residents, prospective shareholders and unit owners, boards of directors and managers, and other affected parties. "

-OMBUDSMAN SHALL BE AN ATTORNEY WITH EXTENSIVE EXPERIENCE IN REAL ESTATE, COOPERATIVE AND CONDOMINIUM LAW AND IN CONFLICT AND ALTER NATIVE DISPUTE RESOLUTION

-OMBUDSMAN AND OFFICERS AND EMPLOYEES OF THE OFFICE SHALL ADHERE TO A CODE OF ETHICS... (it does not state which ethics, such as the IOA)

-THE HEAD OF THE OFFICE SHALL BE THE COOPERATIVE AND CONDOMINIUM OMBUDSMAN WHO SHALL BE APPOINTED BY THE ATTORNEY GENERAL. THE OMBUDSMAN SHALL HOLD OFFICE UNTIL THE END OF THE TERM OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL BY WHOM HE OR SHE WAS APPOINTED (really? Not for a fixed year term but rather the same as the serving AG??) AND UNTIL HIS OR HER SUCCESSOR IS APPOINTED AND HAS QUALIFIED. A VACANCY SHALL BE FILLED IN THE SAME MANNER AS THE ORIGINAL APPOINTMENT


Thoughts?

2 comments:

  1. it is about time!!!! Some coop boards have held home owners hostage in their own homes either due to personal vendettas or similiar intents. We simply can not live in a world where we can impeach a president, a head of state and have no recourse to a coop board. That just does not make sense. In addition, where fiduciary duties are being preached over and over again, where does someone have an out. A lot of coop owners do not understand that a coop board member can be denounced of their position at any given time by a percentage of shareholders. Some coops boards use information on facebook as a judge or character. More importantly, they should be help FINANCIAL immediately if found that they rejected a potential buyer for improper reason. THis will change the entire process. As it is, banks are not approving loans and to have a seemingly financially qualified buyer disapproved for what the board CONSIDERS an unqualified buyers. IF banks use the rule of thumb that 720 credit score will get you a great interest rate, then there should also be a similiar qualification for boards. Buyer and Sellers are losing financially by this cloud that coop boards have imposed.

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  2. Omg, I have been following this law, waiting, Im being tortured here, forced to live under inhabitable conditions, this is a nightmare and cant comprehend this actually is happening. People that live here are petrified of being harassed by this board, nice people, this is craaaaaaazzzzy. And I live in New York??? Go Liz Krueger and Go ACCO, If you dont know, google Alliance for Co op and Condo Owners and support them, they are doing alot of work to push this bill forward.

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