FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: September 20, 2021
 
Contact: Curtis Simmons

Department of Finance Launches the Fine and Interest Reduction Enabling Recovery (FAIRER) Program

FAIRER Program Now Available for New Yorkers to Resolve Eligible Environmental Control Board (ECB) Judgments at a Reduced Cost from September 20 Through December 20

 
New York, NY—The City of New York has established a temporary program allowing New Yorkers and others to pay a reduced amount to resolve eligible Environmental Control Board (ECB) judgments, the New York City Department of Finance announced today. ECB judgments are issued by multiple agencies, including the Sanitation, Fire and Buildings Departments, and they can range anywhere from non-compliance with construction codes to failure to clean a sidewalk.
 
The FAIRER (Fine and Interest Reduction Enabling Recovery) Program is a three-month program authorized by Mayor de Blasio and the New York City Council and administered by the Department of Finance. As the City continues to focus on recovery, the FAIRER Program will enable New Yorkers and others with eligible ECB judgments to see their unpaid judgments reduced by up to 75%. This much-needed relief will enable property owners, small businesses, and other individuals to settle their debt at reduced costs, which will help sustain the momentum for a full recovery.
 
“The City of New York is committed to helping New Yorkers recover from the COVID-19 pandemic by reducing City-issued fines and penalties to the greatest extent possible,” said Department of Finance Commissioner Sherif Soliman. “True to its name, the FAIRER Program offers a fair resolution for outstanding judgment debt that will aid ongoing recovery efforts. It is a chance to clear the slate and start fresh and we hope many New Yorkers will take advantage of the program. I want to thank Mayor de Blasio and the City Council for enacting this program, and our partners in state government who have advocated for this type of relief for businesses, property owners and other New Yorkers.”
 
The amount that customers can save will depend upon when their violations went into judgment and whether the party named on the violation (respondent) attended a hearing held by the Office of Administrative Trials and Hearings:

Type of Judgment Reduction Amount
Contains a Default Penalty for Not Attending a Hearing Default Penalty and Interest
No Default Penalty and Entered on or After March 7, 2020, and prior to June 23, 2021 75% of Base Fine and Interest
No Default Penalty and Entered Before March 7, 2020 25% of Base Fine and Interest

To participate in the FAIRER Program, respondents or payors must pay their eligible reduced judgments in full at www.nyc.gov/mysummons and agree to the program’s terms and conditions no later than December 20, 2021.
 
“The FAIRER Program will be integral to the recovery of the city’s small businesses and overall economy,” said New York City Council Member Mark Gjonaj. “By offering opportunities to significantly reduce petty fines that accumulate and unduly burden already-struggling small businesses, we can help make their survival that much more likely.”
 
“As New Yorkers recover from the pandemic it is imperative that the City continue innovating in ways to support the most vulnerable while avoiding undue financial hardships that impede the recovery effort,” said New York City Council Member Fernando Cabrera. “The FAIRER (Fine and Interest Reduction Enabling Recovery) Program presents an opportunity for the City to ensure accountability while also protecting those who are unable to pay full Environmental Control Board (ECB) judgments and would otherwise be financially ruined by them. I thank my City Council colleagues, the Mayor, and the Department of Finance on the FAIRER program and look forward to seeing its three-month results in my community.”
 
“The FAIRER Program offers an amnesty period helping 1-4 family homeowners who may have received violations. This is a huge relief for owners who have been suffering during the Covid-19 pandemic,” said New York City Council Member Robert Cornegy. “We need safe buildings, and the fines are only a means to making sure our buildings are up to code. Providing this relief to owners is an excellent path to better compliance of needed safety regulations.”
 
“The reduction of fines through the FAIRER (Fine and Interest Reduction Enabling Recovery) Program will provide residents and small businesses with relief from fines they have received from the Environmental Control Board,” said New York State Senator Diane Savino. “As an elected official whose district has a considerable amount of shoreline where constituents sometimes inadvertently face fines while coming into compliance with various rules, regulations, and laws unique to these properties, I applaud the Mayor for introducing this program.”
 
“Small property owners and other New Yorkers have been struggling under the weight of the pandemic for a year and a half now, and it is in our city’s best interest to create a more a welcoming path forward and help them regain their economic footing,” said New York State Assemblyman Steven Cymbrowitz (D-Brooklyn), Chair of the Assembly Housing Committee. “I commend Mayor de Blasio and the City for instituting this amnesty program which will enable New Yorkers to reduce their unpaid judgments and move forward without these ponderous debts in the post-COVID era.”
 
“New York City was hit hard by the COVID-19 Pandemic. One of the many unfortunate consequences is the extreme financial hardship faced by New Yorkers. Many homeowners are having a hard time paying their mortgage, keeping up with their taxes, and addressing various city fines. The FAIRER Program will ease some of the financial burden on New Yorkers by reducing the cost of their Environmental Control Board fines,” said Assemblyman David Weprin.  
 
For more information, including all FAIRER Program eligibility criteria, visit www.nyc.gov/fairer.