March 20: Chinatown Small Property Owners to Protest Thousands in Illegal "BID" Fees Charged by Department of Finance

Friday, Mar 16, 2012

Bethany.jpgOn March 20, 2012, the Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund (AALDEF), the Property Tax Payers' Association, and small property owners in Chinatown will hold a press conference to protest the illegal and excessive fees that the New York City Department of Finance has charged small property owners in Chinatown.

Last year, the City Council voted to require property owners in Chinatown to pay additional fees by creating a Business Improvement District (BID), despite vigorous protests from property owners that the BID fees would put them out of business and lead to increased gentrification of their community.

Now that the Chinatown BID is in place, the Department of Finance has charged the same property owners fees for being within BID boundaries for months before the BID even existed. Property owners were charged fees on their property tax statements for the full fiscal year of 2011-2012, even though the Chinatown BID did not exist until January 31, 2012.

"Chinatown property owners should not be retroactively charged a period of time for an entity that did not even exist until just a month and a half ago. The Department of Finance must take immediate corrective action," said Bethany Li of AALDEF, which is representing the Property Tax Payers Association, a group formed to protect the rights of small property owners in Chinatown.

"Hundreds of property owners objected to the BID and now the City is charging us for something we didn't want, for a period before the BID even existed." said Jan Lee, a property owner in Chinatown.

AALDEF is prepared to file a lawsuit if the Department of Finance does not correct the unlawful assessment for the Chinatown BID.


Event:      Press Conference by AALDEF and the Property Tax Payers' Association Calling for the NYC Department of Finance to Adjust Illegal Fees

Speakers:      Bethany Li, Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund
                       Jan Lee, Chinatown property owner
                       Dean Fong, Chinatown property owner

Time:              11 am, Tuesday, March 20

Location:       19 Mott Street, New York, NY 10013

Please RSVP to Ujala Sehgal at 212-966-5932 ext. 217 or

Bethany Li
Staff Attorney, AALDEF
212.966.5932 ext. 213

Ujala Sehgal
Communications Coordinator, AALDEF
212.966.5932 ext. 217

The Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund (AALDEF), founded in 1974, is a national organization that protects and promotes the civil rights of Asian Americans. By combining litigation, advocacy, education, and organizing, AALDEF works with Asian American communities across the country to secure human rights for all.


Feb. 25: DACA renewal and immigration know your rights clinic at Brooklyn Law School


New AALDEF guidance on Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA)


Remembering AALDEF board member Vivian Cheng-Khanna,1955-2017


2017 AALDEF exit poll: 2,538 Asian American voters polled in 4 states: VA, NJ, NY, MA


Nov. 15-16: AALDEF calls on Asian Americans to mobilize in DC for a clean DREAM Act


Feb. 15, 2018: AALDEF lunar new year gala honoring Preet Bharara, Linda Greenhouse, and Chan Lee


Oct. 1: DACA renewal clinic at Flushing Library


AALDEF denounces ending of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals; new DACA fact sheet


Federal appeals court upholds ruling in AALDEF case that Texas election law violates Voting Rights Act


AALDEF denounces introduction of RAISE Act to restrict legal imigration


AALDEF exit poll presentations in Miami, Las Vegas, Atlanta & San Diego


AALDEF statement on the president's voter fraud commission


Screening of new PBS film "Chinese Exclusion Act" and Q&A with Ric Burns and Li-shin Yu on May 23


New AALDEF report: The Asian American Vote in 2016


AALDEF joins amicus brief in State of Hawaii's challenge to revised Trump travel ban


AALDEF condemns Trump Administration's revamped anti-immigrant travel ban


AALDEF joins Korematsu Center amicus brief in challenge to Trump travel ban in Brooklyn federal court