Vacant, President and Commissioner
Ellen E. Hoffman, Commissioner
Robert J. Firestone, Commissioner
Mary E. Gallagher, General Counsel
The Appeals Division consists of three Commissioners appointed by the Mayor. The Commissioners are appointed for staggered six year terms. Each Commissioner must possess substantial tax knowledge and competence in the area of taxation and have been admitted to practice as an attorney in the State of New York for at least ten years. One of the three Commissioners is designated as President of the Tribunal by the Mayor and serves as such during his or her term. In addition to his or her duties as a Commissioner, the President is responsible for the overall administration and operation of the Tribunal. However, neither the President nor any Commissioner has any role with respect to specific cases pending before the Administrative Law Judge Division.
Commissioner Hoffman's term expires on June 30, 2016 and Commissioner Firestone's term expires on June 30, 2018. The third Commissioner's term expires on June 30, 2020.
When an exception is filed with the Appeals Division by a taxpayer or the Commissioner of Finance (or both) to a determination of an Administrative Law Judge, the Commissioners will review the record of the hearing and any briefs submitted. They may also grant or request oral argument. The Commissioners will then issue a written decision either affirming, reversing or modifying the determination of the Administrative Law Judge, or remanding the case to the Administrative Law Judge for additional proceedings. Each decision of the Commissioners sets forth the issues in the case, the relevant facts established by the record and the Commissioners' application of the law to the facts in the record. Each decision must be rendered within six months after the latest of the date the exception is taken, the date briefs are filed by the parties or the date of the oral argument before the Commissioners.
Decisions rendered by the Commissioners are final and binding on DOF. Taxpayers, however, may appeal the decision of the Commissioners by instituting a proceeding pursuant to Article 78 of the Civil Practice Law and Rules with the Appellate Division, First Department, of the New York State Supreme Court.