Kaminsky steps up for Sandy victims


Assemblyman Todd Kaminsky has several important pieces of legislation he either authored or co-sponsored for Hurricane Sandy victims that have passed the Assembly and are awaiting action by either the Senate or Governor to become law.

“Two-and-a-half-years later, it is unconscionable that some families are still not home, and that many are struggling with high debt and outstanding insurance and disaster claims,” said Kaminsky.

One bill provides oversight over New York Rising. The legislation, co-sponsored with Senator Thomas Croci would the Governor to produce quarterly reports detailing the status of all New York Rising cases. It should result in cases being expedited and money flowing into the hands of storm victims. The law awaits the governor’s signature.

Kaminsky and Senator Michael Venditto worked on legislation that passed the Assembly and Senate, providing tax relief for Sandy victims. It would slow a homeowner’s property taxes increase as a result of making changes to their Sandy-damaged home. Even repairs to homes that return the property to pre-storm condition have an adverse effect on property tax values. If approved by the governor, this legislation would limit increase in property taxes to the amount that it would have increased if Sandy had not occurred.

The Assemblyman authored legislation that provides tax relief to homeowners who withdrew funds from certain retirement savings accounts in order to repair or rebuild Sandy-damaged homes. If approved it would allow a homeowner to retroactively reduce their state taxable income by the amount they withdrew. This would offset the tax penalty incurred by those who had to make the hard choice of dipping into, and in some cases depleting, their retirement funds early.

Kaminsky also sponsored legislation, to protect homeowners from fraudulent mold remediation specialists. After Sandy, individuals falsely claiming to be specialists, who did not fully eradicate dangerous mold, approached many homeowners. This legislation strengthens enforcement standards to ensure that mold removal specialists are trained, licensed and compliant with health codes so residents are not at risk of adverse health effects.