[HISTORY: Adopted by the Board of Trustees of the Village of Hewlett Neck as indicated in article histories. Amendments noted where applicable.]
[Adopted 3-4-1968 by L.L. No. 1-1968]
[Amended 1-5-1998 by L.L. No. 1-1998]
Pursuant to the authority granted by § 5-530 of the Village Law of the State of New York, a tax equal to 1% of its gross income from and after the first day of April, 1968, is hereby imposed upon every utility doing business in the Village of Hewlett Neck, which is subject to the supervision of the State Department of Public Service, which has a gross income for the 12 months ending March 31 in excess of $500, except motor carriers or brokers subject to such supervision, and a tax equal to 1% of its gross operating income from and after the first day of April, 1968, is hereby imposed upon every other utility doing business in the Village of Hewlett Neck which has a gross operating income for the 12 months ending March 31 in excess of $500, which taxes shall have application only within the territorial limits of the Village of Hewlett Neck and shall be in addition to any and all other taxes and fees imposed by any other provision of law. Such taxes shall not be imposed on any transaction originating or consummated outside of the territorial limits of the Village of Hewlett Neck, notwithstanding that some act be necessarily performed with respect to such transaction within such limits.
[Amended 1-5-1998 by L.L. No. 1-1998]
Words and phrases used in this article, unless otherwise noted, shall have the same meanings ascribed to them as in § 186-a of the Tax Law.
Every utility subject to tax under this article shall keep such records of its business and in such form as the Village Treasurer may require, and such records shall be preserved for a period of three years, except that the Village Treasurer may consent to their destruction within that period or may require that they be kept longer.
Every utility subject to tax hereunder shall file annually, on or before the 25th day of January, a return for the 12 calendar months preceding such return date, or any portion thereof for which the tax imposed hereby is effective; provided, however, that in lieu of the annual return required by the foregoing provisions, any utility may file quarterly, on or before May 25, August 25, November 25 and February 25, a return for the three calendar months preceding each such return date, and in the case of the first such return, for all preceding calendar months during which the tax imposed hereby was effective. Every return shall state the gross income or gross operating income for the period covered thereby. Returns shall be filed with the Village Treasurer on a form to be furnished by him or her for such purpose and shall contain such other data, information or matter as he or she may require to be included therein. The Village Treasurer, in order to insure payment of the tax imposed, may require at any time a further or supplemental return, which shall contain any data that may be specified by him or her, and he or she may require any utility doing business in the Village of Hewlett Neck file an annual return, which shall contain any data specified by him or her, regardless of whether the utility is subject to tax under this article. Every return shall have annexed thereto an affidavit of the head of the utility making the same, or of the owner or of a copartner thereof, or of a principal officer of the corporation, if such business be conducted by a corporation, to the effect that the statements contained therein are true.
At the time of filing a return as required by this article, each utility shall pay to the Village Treasurer the tax imposed by this article for the period covered by such return. Such tax shall be due and payable at the time of filing the return, or, if a return is not filed when due, on the last day on which the return is required to be filed.
In case any return filed pursuant to this article shall be insufficient or unsatisfactory to the Village Treasurer, and if a corrected or sufficient return is not filed within 20 days after the same is required by notice from him or her, or if no return is made for any period, the Village Treasurer shall determine the amount of tax due from such information as he or she is able to obtain, and if necessary, may estimate the tax on the basis of external indices or otherwise. He or she shall give notice of such determination to the person liable for such tax. Such determination shall finally and irrevocably fix such tax, unless the person against whom it is assessed shall, within 30 days after the giving of notice of such determination, apply to the Village Treasurer for a hearing, or unless the Village Treasurer, of his or her own motion, shall reduce the same. After such hearing, the Village Treasurer shall give notice of his or her decision to the person liable for the tax. Such decision may be reviewed by a proceeding under Article 78 of the Civil Practice Law and Rules of the State of New York, if application therefor is made within 90 days after the giving of notice of such decision. An order to review such decision shall not be granted unless the amount of any tax sought to be reviewed, with interest and penalties thereon, if any, shall be first deposited with the Village Treasurer and an undertaking filed with him or her in such amount and with such sureties as a Justice of the Supreme Court shall approve, to the effect that if such proceeding be dismissed, or the tax confirmed, the applicant will pay all costs and charges which may accrue in the prosecution of such proceeding, or at the option of the applicant, such undertaking may be in a sum sufficient to cover the tax, interest, penalties, costs and charges aforesaid, in which event the applicant shall not be required to pay such tax, interest and penalties as a condition precedent to the granting of such order.
Except in the case of a willfully false or fraudulent return with intent to evade the tax, no assessment of additional tax shall be made after the expiration of more than three years from the date of the filing of a return; provided, however, that where no return has been filed as required by this article, the tax may be assessed at any time.
Any notice authorized or required under the provisions of this article may be given by mailing the same to the person for whom it is intended, in a postpaid envelope, addressed to such person at the address given by him or her in the last return filed by him or her under this article, or if no return has been filed, then to such address as may be obtainable. The mailing of such notice shall be presumptive evidence of the receipt of the same by the person to whom addressed. Any period of time, which is determined according to the provisions of this article by the giving of notice, shall commence to run from the date of mailing of such notice.
Any person failing to file a return or corrected return, or to pay any tax or any portion thereof, within the time required by this article, shall be subject to a penalty of 5% of the amount of tax due, plus 1% of such tax for each month of delay or fraction thereof, excepting the first month, after such return was required to be filed or such tax became due, but the Village Treasurer, for cause shown, may extend the time for filing any return, and if satisfied that the delay was excusable, may remit all or any portion of the penalty fixed by the foregoing provisions of this section.
If, within one year from the payment of any tax or penalty, the payer thereof shall make application for a refund thereof, and the Village Treasurer or the Court shall determine that such tax or penalty or any portion thereof was erroneously or illegally collected, the Village Treasurer shall refund the amount so determined. For like cause and within the same period, a refund may be so made on the initiative of the Village Treasurer. However, no refund shall be made of a tax or penalty paid pursuant to a determination of the Village Treasurer, after a hearing as hereinbefore provided or of his or her own motion shall have reduced the tax or penalty, or it shall have been established in a proceeding under Article 78 of the Civil Practice Law and Rules of the State of New York that such determination was erroneous or illegal. All refunds shall be made out of moneys collected under this article. An application for a refund, made as hereinbefore provided, shall be deemed an application for the revision of any tax or penalty complained of, and the Village Treasurer may receive additional evidence with respect thereto. After making this determination, the Village Treasurer shall give notice thereof to the person interested, and he or she shall be entitled to an order to review such determination under said Article 78, subject to the provisions hereinbefore contained relating to the granting of such an order.
The tax imposed by this article shall be charged against and be paid by the utility and shall not be added as a separate item to bills rendered by the utility to customers or others, but shall constitute a part of the operating costs of such utility.
Whenever any person shall fail to pay any tax or penalty imposed by this article, the Village Attorney shall, upon the request of the Village Treasurer, bring an action to enforce payment of the same. The proceeds of any judgment obtained in any such action shall be paid to the Village Treasurer. Each such tax and penalty shall be a lien upon the property of the person liable to pay the same, in the same manner and to the same extent that the tax and penalty imposed by § 186-a of the Tax Law is made a lien.
In the administration of this article, the Village Treasurer shall have power to make such reasonable rules and regulations, not inconsistent with law, as may be necessary for the exercise of his or her powers and the performance of his or her duties and to prescribe the form of blanks, reports and other records relating to the administration and enforcement of the tax, to take testimony and proofs, under oath, with reference to any matter within the line of his or her official duty under this article and to subpoena and require the attendance of witnesses and the production of books, papers and documents.
Except in accordance with proper judicial order, or as otherwise provided by law, it shall be unlawful for the Village Treasurer or any agent, clerk or employee of the Village of Hewlett Neck to divulge or make known in any manner the amount of gross income or gross operating income or any particulars set forth or disclosed in any return under this article. The officer charged with the custody of such returns shall not be required to produce any of them or evidence of anything contained in them in any action or proceeding in any court, except on behalf of the Village of Hewlett Neck in an action or proceeding under the provisions of this article or on behalf of the State Tax Commission in an action or proceeding under the provisions of the tax law of the State of New York or on behalf of any party to any action or proceeding under the provisions of this article when the returns or facts shown thereby are directly involved in such action or proceeding, in either of which events, the Court may require the production of, and may admit in evidence, so much of said returns or of the facts shown thereby as are pertinent to the action or proceedings, and no more. Nothing herein shall be construed to prohibit the delivery to a person or his or her duly authorized representative of a copy of any return filed by him or her, nor to prohibit the publication of statistics so classified, as to prevent the identification of particular returns and the items thereof or the publication of delinquent lists showing the names of persons who have failed to pay their taxes at the time and in the manner provided for by this article, together with any relevant information which in the opinion of the Village Treasurer may assist in the collection of such delinquent taxes or the inspection by the Village Attorney or other legal representatives of the Village of Hewlett Neck of the return of any person who shall bring action to set aside or review the tax based thereon or against whom an action has been instituted in accordance with the provisions of this article.
Any offense against the foregoing secrecy provisions shall be punishable by a fine not exceeding $1,000 or by imprisonment not exceeding one year, or both, and if the offender be an officer, agent, clerk or employee of the Village of Hewlett Neck, he or she shall be dismissed from office and shall be disqualified form holding any office or employment in the Village of Hewlett Neck for a period of five years thereafter.
[Amended 1-5-1998 by L.L. No. 1-1998]
Notwithstanding any provisions of this article, the Village Treasurer may exchange with the chief fiscal officer of any city or any other village in the State of New York, information contained in returns filed under this article, provided that such city or other village grants similar privileges to the Village of Hewlett Neck, and provided that such information is to be used for tax purposes only, and the Village Treasurer shall, upon request, furnish the State Tax Commission with any information contained in such returns.
All taxes and penalties received by the Village Treasurer under this article shall be paid into the treasury of the village and shall be credited to and deposited in the general fund of the village.
[Adopted 11-1-1999 by L.L. No. 12-1999 ]
Editor's Note: This local law also provided that the offices of Assessor, Board of Assessors and Board of Assessment Review of the Village off Hewlett Neck be abolished upon the effective date of this law and that the law is applicable to all village assessment rolls based upon a taxable status date on or after January 1, 2000.
Pursuant to Real Property Tax Law § 1402, Subdivision 3, as in effect on the effective date of this article, the Village of Hewlett Neck shall cease to be an assessing unit, and village property taxes shall thereafter be levied on the county assessment roll with respect to real property located in the Village of Hewlett Neck in the manner provided by law. The village shall have the right to resume status as an assessing unit in the future, in the manner provided by law.