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NYS Comptroller

THOMAS P. DiNAPOLI

The Academy for New York State's Local Officials

Protecting the Public’s Interest: A Tutorial on Local Government Ethics and Transparency in New York State

Module 1 - Conflict of Interest of Municipal Officers and Employees

Exceptions Related to Property

Two of the exceptions found in Article 18 relate to the acquisition of real property.

One exception applies to the purchase of real property, or an interest in real property (for example, fee title, an easement, or a lease), but only if the governing board of the municipality obtains from a State Supreme Court justice an order approving the purchase and the consideration for the purchase. For example, if a town negotiates a contract to purchase a parcel of land from the town supervisor, the town supervisor would not have a prohibited interest in the contract if the purchase and the purchase price are approved by a State Supreme Court justice. It should be noted, however, that this exception does not apply to sales of real property by a municipality.

There are also times that a municipality may need to acquire real property from a municipal officer or employee who is not willing to voluntarily sell or otherwise make the property available to the municipality. In these cases, there is another exception that applies to the acquisition of real property, or an interest in real property, through condemnation proceedings. When a municipality acquires real property through condemnation proceedings, the courts determine how much the municipality must pay for the property.

  Next: Miscellaneous Exceptions