EASTCHESTER, N.Y. -- Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed a bill into law on Wednesday that is intended to more fairly distribute the costs of operating fire hydrants.
The law authorizes the Public Service Commission to allow costs for fire hydrant infrastructure maintenance and access to be charged to all water customers.
Savings achieved as a result of this action will be given back to property tax payers within the municipality.
While this practice has been the case for many municipalities, such as New York City, that have their own water systems, it is not true for those cities that buy their water from a private company. This bill remedies this inequity and allows communities in Westchester to be treated like the majority of communities across the state.
"I commend Governor Cuomo for signing our legislation that provides property-tax relief for communities serviced by private water companies,” Assemblyman Steve Otis said in a statement. “Now, as in most of the state, the cost of fire hydrant maintenance and access will be borne by all water ratepayers, not just municipal property taxpayers."
There are 10 municipalities in Westchester affected by the new law: New Rochelle, Eastchester, Bronxville, Tuckahoe, Pelham, Pelham Manor, Port Chester, Dobbs Ferry, Ardsley and Hastings-on-Hudson.