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SECTION 202
Secrecy required of officials; penalty for violation
Tax (TAX) CHAPTER 60, ARTICLE 9
§ 202. Secrecy required of officials; penalty for violation. 1. Except
in accordance with proper judicial order or as otherwise provided by
law, it shall be unlawful for any tax commissioner, any officer or
employee of the department of taxation and finance, or any person who,
pursuant to this section, is permitted to inspect any report, or to whom
any information contained in any report is furnished, or any person
engaged or retained by such department on an independent contract basis,
or any person who in any manner may acquire knowledge of the contents of
a report filed pursuant to this article, to divulge or make known in any
manner the amount of income or any particulars set forth or disclosed in
any report under this article. The officers charged with the custody of
such reports shall not be required to produce any of them or evidence of
anything contained in them in any action or proceeding in any court,
except on behalf of the state or the commissioner of taxation and
finance in an action or proceeding under the provisions of this chapter
or in any other action or proceeding involving the collection of a tax
due under this chapter to which the state or the commissioner of
taxation and finance is a party or a claimant, or on behalf of any party
to any action or proceeding under the provisions of this article when
the reports or facts shown thereby are directly involved in such action
or proceeding, in any of which events the court may require the
production of, and may admit in evidence, so much of said reports or of
the facts shown thereby, as are pertinent to the action or proceeding
and no more. The commissioner of taxation and finance may, nevertheless,
publish a copy or a summary of any determination or decision rendered
after the formal hearing provided for in section one thousand
eighty-nine of this chapter. Nothing herein shall be construed to
prohibit the delivery to a corporation or its duly authorized
representative of a copy of any report filed by it, nor to prohibit the
publication of statistics so classified as to prevent the identification
of particular reports and the items thereof, or the publication of
delinquent lists showing the names of taxpayers who have failed to pay
their taxes at the time and in the manner provided by section one
hundred ninety-seven together with any relevant information which in the
opinion of the commissioner of taxation and finance may assist in the
collection of such delinquent taxes; or the inspection by the
attorney-general or other legal representatives of the state of the
report of any corporation which shall bring action to set aside or
review the tax based thereon, or against whom an action or proceeding
under this chapter has been recommended by the commissioner of taxation
and finance or the attorney-general or has been instituted; or the
inspection of the reports of any corporation by the comptroller or duly
designated officer or employee of the state department of audit and
control, for purposes of the audit of a refund of any tax paid by such
corporation under this article; or the disclosing to a state agency,
pursuant to section one hundred seventy-one-f of this chapter, of the
name and taxpayer identification number of any taxpayer whose
overpayment is certified to the comptroller to be credited against a
past-due legally enforceable debt owed to such state agency and the
amount of the overpayment and interest thereon certified to the
comptroller to be credited against a past-due legally enforceable debt;
or the disclosing to the commissioner of finance of the city of New
York, pursuant to section one hundred seventy-one-l of this chapter, of
the name and taxpayer identification number of any taxpayer whose
overpayment is certified to the comptroller to be credited against a
city of New York tax warrant judgment debt. Provided, further, nothing
herein shall be construed to prohibit the disclosure of the names of
corporations subject to tax under section one hundred eighty-two or one
hundred eighty-two-a of this article, or to any two or all of such
taxes, for purposes of assisting corporations subject to such tax or
taxes in determining whether a gross receipt or a gross receipt from
sales of petroleum is an excludible gross receipt or excludible gross
receipt from sales of petroleum because it is derived from a sale for
resale.

2. (a) Any officer or employee of the state who willfully violates the
provisions of subdivision one of this section shall be dismissed from
office and be incapable of holding any public office in this state for a
period of five years thereafter.

(b) Cross-reference: For criminal penalties, see article thirty-seven
of this chapter.

3. Notwithstanding any provisions of this section, the tax commission
may permit the secretary of the treasury of the United States or his
delegates, or the proper officer of any other state charged with tax
administration, or the authorized representative of either such officer,
to inspect the reports filed under this article, or may furnish to such
officer or his authorized representative an abstract of any such report
or supply information concerning an item contained in any such report,
or disclosed by an investigation of tax liability under this article,
but such permission shall be granted or such information furnished to
such officer or his representative only if the laws of the United States
or of such other state, as the case may be, grant substantially similar
privileges to the commission or officer of this state charged with the
administration of the tax imposed by this article and such information
is to be used for tax purposes only; and provided further the
commissioner of taxation and finance may furnish to the secretary of the
treasury of the United States or his delegates such reports filed under
this article and other tax information, as he may consider proper, for
use in court actions or proceedings under the internal revenue code,
whether civil or criminal, where a written request therefor has been
made to the commissioner of taxation and finance by the secretary of the
treasury or his delegates provided the laws of the United States grant
substantially similar powers to the secretary of the treasury or his
delegates. Where the commissioner of taxation and finance has so
authorized use of reports or other tax information in such actions or
proceedings, officers and employees of the department of taxation and
finance may testify in such actions or proceedings in respect to such
reports or other tax information.

4. Notwithstanding any provisions of this section, the tax commission
may furnish any municipality with such information contained in the
franchise tax reports filed under this article as it may consider proper
for use in any certiorari or condemnation proceedings, and may furnish
any authorized officer or employee of the department of financial
services of the state of New York with any information contained in the
franchise tax reports of corporations liable to pay a tax under section
one hundred eighty-seven of this chapter, provided such information is
to be used for tax purposes only.

5. Notwithstanding the provisions of subdivision one of this section,
the tax commission, in its discretion, may require or permit any or all
persons liable for any fee or tax imposed by this article, to make
payment of any fee, tax, penalty or interest imposed by this article to
banks, banking houses or trust companies designated by the tax
commission and to file reports with such banks, banking houses or trust
companies as agents of the tax commission, in lieu of making any such
payment directly to the tax commission. However, the tax commission
shall designate only such banks, banking houses or trust companies as
are or shall be designated by the comptroller as depositories pursuant
to section two hundred six.

6. (a) Notwithstanding the provisions of subdivision one of this
section, upon written request from the chairperson of the committee on
ways and means of the United States House of Representatives, the
chairperson of the committee on finance of the United States Senate, or
the chairperson of the joint committee on taxation of the United States
Congress, the commissioner shall furnish such committee with any current
or prior year reports specified in such request that were filed under
this article by the president of the United States, vice-president of
the United States, member of the United States Congress representing New
York state, or any person who served in or was employed by the executive
branch of the government of the United States on the executive staff of
the president, in the executive office of the president, or in an acting
or confirmed capacity in a position subject to confirmation by the
United States senate; or, in New York state: a statewide elected
official, as defined in paragraph (a) of subdivision one of section
seventy-three-a of the public officers law; a state officer or employee,
as defined in subparagraph (i) of paragraph (c) of subdivision one of
such section seventy-three-a; a political party chairperson, as defined
in paragraph (h) of subdivision one of such section seventy-three-a; a
local elected official, as defined in subdivisions one and two of
section eight hundred ten of the general municipal law; a person
appointed, pursuant to law, to serve due to vacancy or otherwise in the
position of a local elected official, as defined in subdivisions one and
two of section eight hundred ten of the general municipal law; a member
of the state legislature; or a judge or justice of the unified court
system; or filed by a partnership, firm, association, corporation,
joint-stock company, trust or similar entity directly or indirectly
controlled by any individual listed in this paragraph, whether by
contract, through ownership or control of a majority interest in such
entity, or otherwise, or filed by a partnership, firm, association,
corporation, joint-stock company, trust or similar entity of which any
individual listed in this paragraph holds ten percent or more of the
voting securities of such entity; provided however that, prior to
furnishing any report, the commissioner shall redact any copy of a
federal return (or portion thereof) attached to, or any information on a
federal return that is reflected on, such report, and any social
security numbers, account numbers and residential address information.

(b) No reports shall be furnished pursuant to this subdivision unless
the chairperson of the requesting committee certifies in writing that
such reports have been requested related to, and in furtherance of, a
legitimate task of the Congress, that the requesting committee has made
a written request to the United States secretary of the treasury for
related federal reports or report information, pursuant to 26 U.S.C.
Section 6103(f), and that if such requested reports are inspected by
and/or submitted to another committee, to the United States House of
Representatives, or to the United States Senate, then such inspection
and/or submission shall occur in a manner consistent with the federal
law as informed by requirements and procedures established in 26 U.S.C.
Section 6103(f).