OSC Approval for Town and County Special Districts and Town Sewer, Drainage and Water Improvements
Towns and counties proposing to issue debt to finance the establishment, extension of or increase in the maximum amount to be expended for a special district are required to apply for the approval of the Office of the State Comptroller if the cost to the typical property is above the OSC-calculated average estimated cost threshold.
The Comptroller’s regulations (Part 85) outline the steps related to applications seeking permission of the Comptroller, including Town and County Improvement Districts and Town Sewer, Drainage and Water Improvements. Even when OSC approval is not required, certified copies of certain documents must still be filed with our office.
Certain "low cost" special districts which are at or below the average estimated cost thresholds do NOT require approval of the State Comptroller. However, if debt is being issued, a certified copy of the notice of hearing for the low cost district must be sent to our office. This copy must be sent on or about the date of publication to the address listed below. It should be sent no later than 14 calendar days after publication. This notice allows us to accurately calculate future average estimated cost thresholds.
2021 Special District Average Estimated Cost Thresholds
Effective for proceedings for which a Notice of Hearing is published from January 1, 2021 through December 31, 2021
Town Special Districts (includes the establishment, extension of or increase in the maximum amount to be expended):
- Sewer $696
- Water $887
County Special District Increases and Improvements:
- Sewer $11
For county water and sewer establishments, county water increases and improvements and all other types of districts, there was insufficient data to calculate meaningful average estimated costs. Therefore, any type of district not listed above will be subject to applicable requirements for obtaining the Comptroller’s approval, irrespective of the cost to the typical property or home, if debt is proposed to be issued to finance the improvement.
Resources for Municipal Attorneys
- Part 85 – Application for Permission of State Comptroller, including list of all required parts [pdf]
- Notice of Hearing Requirement for Establishment or Extension of Town Special Districts [pdf]
- Frequently Asked Questions on the Establishment or Extension of Town Special Districts Concerning Required Determinations and Methods of Assessment [pdf]
Submit Applications to OSC
Office of the State Comptroller
Division of Legal Services
110 State Street
Albany, NY 12236
Sean McDermott, Division of Legal Services: 518-474-3517