Articles Pertaining to SYDA's Tax Exempt Status and Surrounding Controversies

 

Quoted material from the ISCA site:

Author:           
    Posted: 9/13/2002 12:49:54 PM  Type: Doc_article         
    Topic/Group:    Syda Yopa (Swami Muktananda)
    Publication:Cult Observer Vol.: 07  No.: 03
    Date:    1990  Page(s): 10

Ashram to be Taxed

    The town of South Fallsburg, NY has placed $1.5 million of property owned by the tax-exempt Sidda Yoga Dham (SYDA) Foundation on the local tax rolls. The amount of the tax would be about $450,000, not including ten parcels of land reportedly purchased by the group since the beginning of 1990. Placing of SYDA on the tax rolls came to light when a local resident asked at a recent Town Board what was being done to control the huge religious organization. Suggesting that at least two members of the board owed their seats to block voting by members of the foundation, Leon Greenberg claimed the SYDA Foundation should lose its tax-exempt status because it had actively engaged in the political process. He said the foundation was also in violation because it was allowing at least 12 businesses to operate from its grounds. Democrat (Catskill, Mts., NY), 3/16/90, 1A, 14A.

Cult Observer, Vol. 7, No. 3 1990, p. 10
http://www.icsahome.com/logon/elibdocview.asp?Subject=Ashram+to+be+Taxed

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Bibliographic data                                   
New York Town Cuts Siddha Yoga's Tax Exemptions
     Author:           
    Posted: 8/11/2004 2:17:31 PM  Type: Doc_article         
    Topic/Group:    Syda Foundation (Swami Muktananda)
    Publication:Cult Observer Vol.: 04  No.: 04
    Date:    1987  Page(s): 12


New York Town Cuts Siddha Yoga's Tax Exemptions

From "Fallsburg firm on taxable land," the South Fallsburg, NY, Times Herald Record, June 9, 1987, p. 5

    The Board of Assessment Review of South Fallsburg, in New York state's Catskill Mountains, has upheld a decision to deny tax exemptions on the housing and vacant lands of religious non-profit corporations in the town.

    Such corporations wishing to challenge the action have until August to file suit in the state Supreme Court.

    "Let them [the religious tax-exempt corporations] go to court, let them pay their fair share," . said review board member Oscar Pavloff.

    The denial of exemption was aimed largely at the Siddha Yoga (SYDA) Foundation, which has been the focus controversy over its expanding list of tax-exempt property in Fallsburg.

    The SYDA Foundation has 454 acres worth $1.5 million in the town, and has been the focus of lobbying efforts by residents who want to halt what they see as abuses of the state's not-for-profit exemption laws.

    SYDA had sought full exemption on all of its Fallsburg holdings, but in April Fallsburg Assessor Thomas Frey denied exemptions on the housing and vacant portions of SYDA's land holdings and those of several other religious non-profit groups in the town. Church-oriented buildings and offices remained exempt.

    Frey said the change in his exemption policy was intended to force the non-profit corporations to prove residential units and undeveloped land are directly related to religious functions.

Cult Observer, Vol. 4, No. 4, 1987, p. 12

http://www.icsahome.com/logon/elibdocview.asp?Subject=New+York+Town+Cuts+Siddha+Yoga%27s+Tax+Exemptions


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Bibliographic data                                   
Siddha Property Off Tax Rolls
     Author:           
    Posted: 8/28/2004 2:33:45 PM  Type: Doc_article         
    Topic/Group:    Syda Foundation (Swami Muktananda)
    Publication:Cult Observer Vol.: 03  No.: 09
    Date:    1986  Page(s): 12

Siddha Property Off Tax Rolls

From the Times Herald Record [Catskill Mts., NY] September 11, 1986.

    The Siddha Meditation Center Ashram, which already owns two hotels and nearly 100 acres in the town of Fallsburg, has purchased 74 acres of adjoining property that will be taken off the tax rolls.

    Because of its tax-free status, the group, which receives thousands of visitors annually, has been the target of complaints since coming to Sullivan County in 1976 when it bought the first of the two hotels that have a combined tax assessment of $713,500. Fallsburg assessor Thomas Frey, commenting on the fact that nearly half of the town's assessed property is tax exempt, said "I don't think there should be any [exemptions], but that's the way it is." He said he would monitor the property's use to make sure that it qualified for exemption. He noted that another parcel of Siddha-owned land which had sat idle, unused for religious purpose, was recently sold by the group after he had placed it back on the tax roll.

Cult Observer, Vol. 3, No. 9, 1986, p. 12

http://www.icsahome.com/logon/elibdocview.asp?Subject=Siddha+Property+Off+Tax+Rolls