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$2m Back to City for Prop. Damage

Record Amount Of Ins. Claims

City Comptroller John C. Liu announced that over the past fiscal year, his office recovered $1,978,370 from the insurance companies of individuals who damaged or destroyed city government property.

The amount is the highest ever recovered for damage claims by the city comptroller’s office, and marks a 34 percent increase over last year’s total, the prior record.

“When city property gets damaged- whether it’s a police car or a stop sign-we’re going to do everything we can to get restitution for taxpayers,” Liu said. “I am pleased we are doing an even better job, as this record-breaking year for damage recoveries shows.”

In Fiscal Year (FY) 2012, 854 of such cases-known as “affirmative claims”-were settled by the city comptroller’s office, averaging $2,316.59 per claim. Claims settled in FY 2012 involved incidents such as the following:

– On June 1, 2011, a vehicle making an illegal U-turn at East Tremont and LaSalle Avenues in the Bronx totaled an NYPD vehicle that had its lights and sirens engaged. This resulted in the largest claim settled by the comptroller’s office in FY 2012, with $23,973 collected on Sept. 26, 2011.

– On July 29, 2009, an NYPD vehicle was hit at Flatbush and Woodruff avenues in Brooklyn as it was driving with its lights and sirens engaged to an in-progress assault. The collision resulted in a five-vehicle accident. The comptroller’s office recovered $6,155 on Nov. 23, 2011.

– On Oct. 31, 2011, one of two vehicles involved in a collision knocked over a traffic light at Avenue L and East 108th Street in Brooklyn. The city collected $3,705 was collected on Apr. 24.

– On Apr. 11, a vehicle at Atlantic Avenue and 76th Street on the Woodhaven/ Ozone Park border ran a red light and collided with another vehicle that knocked over a traffic light. The city recovered $1,240 on June 19.

– On June 17, 2011, the driver of a rental truck crashed into an NYPD vehicle as it was pulling into a parking spot in front of a police precinct on Foster Avenue in Brooklyn. The city collected $1,090 on Feb. 13.

The New York City Charter empowers the comptroller’s office to settle and adjust claims in favor of or against the city. The affirmative claims process is administered by the comptroller’s Bureau of Law and Adjustment, which works with insurance companies to settle claims without litigation.

Claims that cannot be settled by the Bureau of Law and Adjustment are referred to the city’s Law Department.

Liu credited the Bureau of Law and Adjustment for its work on behalf of New York City’s taxpayers.

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