Following 'Tax Revolt,' Will Heads Roll?

Politicians won't press for personnel changes at the Dept. of Finance.

After checking the math done by the people who assess property taxes in New York City, an investigation found that for the values of as many as 10 percent of Queens co-ops, they .

No refunds have been made, and co-op owners are ticked off. But is anybody ticked off enough to press for heads to roll at the Dept. of Finance?

"Absolutely," said Glen Oaks Village Co-op President Bob Friedrich. "The outrageously inflated assessed valuation numbers were the function of a computer glitch and misguided individuals at the DOF," he added.

Friedrich, blamed DOF Commissioner David Frankel for having his "head in the sand," and refusing to acknowledge assessment errors, when valuations double and tripled to as high as 147 percent over the previous year's bill.

"His complete unwillingness to acknowledge such an obvious error and flaw in the system that generated these valuations, illustrates how this unelected bureaucrat whose decisions profoundly affect tens of thousands of people, must go," Friedrich added.

Fellow co-op president Warren Schreiber, of the Bay Terrace Community Alliance, also lacks faith in Frankel.

"should be the first to go since the property tax fiasco occurred on his watch. As is often said 'The Buck Stops Here,'" said Schreiber, who was one of the first to organize a protest and press circuit that became known citywide as a '.'

Schreiber would like to see the job performance of be evaluated on an individual and continuing basis, and for training procedures to be cleaned up. "Yes, changes are necessary but they should be changes in the way the DOF operates. A wholesale house cleaning would do more harm than good," he added.

Of three of the local public servants involved in creating legislation to reform the tax office, none indicated that they wanted to reform the staff roster.

"No comment," said a spokesman for Councilman Dan Halloran, R-Whitestone.

Sen. Tony Avelle, D-Bayside, said he was "not at that point yet." Avella added that he has not read the Comptroller's report yet, but that he has had an encouraging sit-down with Frankel on the matter.

Assemblyman Ed Braunstein, D-Bayside, did not respond to repeated requests for an answer.


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