Thursday, December 25, 2014

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NY1 For You: Condo Owners Want Collective Water Bill Error Fixed

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Some Staten Island condo owners say they are being penalized by the city for a debt they don't owe. NY1's Susan Jhun filed the following "NY1 For You" report.

Every time condo owner Michael Dellacroce turns on his water he's reminded of a huge bill he doesn't owe.

"Apparently there's one household that hasn't paid their water bill," he said.

And because of that, condo owners at Hills North Condos on Staten Island say they're all being held accountable for one condo owner's debt which runs into the thousands even though each condo has its own water meter and account and everyone is billed separately based on usage.

"This is not my water bill, it's not any of our water bills except the person who used the water who should be paying it, not us," said Judy, a fellow condo owner.

"Don't make their problem, my problem," Dellacroce added.

It's a problem that's far more serious than just an overdue bill.

"They'll be a lien put on this house if the bill isn't paid," Dellacroce said.

"I'm going to be putting my house in the market in a couple of months and if there's an outstanding lien that's going to ruin any chance I have of selling my home," said Judy.

After owners contacted "NY1 For You" the station called the city's Department of Environmental Protection. Upon looking into the situation, a DEP spokesman discovered there was an error in the listing of the tax lots which were separated back in 2002.

He said at that time, apparently six condos were never registered to become separate tax lots, which include the condo with the debt and those who received that owner's bill.

The DEP spokesman went on to say the agency will get in touch with the property manager for the condo association to separate the six properties' lots so five of the owners will stop receiving lien notices and be cleared of a debt they don't owe.

NY1 will continue to follow the story.

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