Bracing for Sandy's Second Impact

First came the floods from torrential rains and record storm surges. Now, long after the flood waters have receded, localities across the New York region are bracing for receding finances from declining property tax revenues.
January 26, 2013, 11am PST | Jonathan Nettler | @nettsj
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Alison Leigh Cowan looks at the next hit from Hurricane Sandy that's bearing down on localities across the New York region, most of which are still struggling to clean up. "The storm damaged tens of billions of dollars’ worth of real estate, especially in coastal areas of Long Island and New Jersey. As a result, localities can no longer expect to reap the same taxes from properties that have lost much of their value — in some cases, permanently."

"Without new revenues, state and local officials and Wall Street analysts said, these areas may have to make deep cuts in spending on schools, police and fire departments and other services. They also may be hard-pressed to finance rebuilding."

“Absolutely, this is going to be devastating for several years,” said Ester Bivona, former president of the New York State Receivers and Collectors Association, which represents local tax officials.

"Experts said the looming revenue crisis for localities in the region underscores how natural disasters can have a profound effect long after the debris is gone."

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Published on Thursday, January 24, 2013 in The New York Times
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