Studio, NYC reach water, sewer accord

July 3, 2007 at 7:50 PM

NEW YORK, July 3 (UPI) -- New York officials found it's not easy getting the "Sesame Street" studio's green as an audit showed it didn't pay water and sewer bills for years.

The review by City Controller William Thompson on Kaufman Astoria Studio, which also played home to "The Cosby Show," failed to pay $335,000 for water and sewer for more than a decade, the New York Daily News reported Tuesday. Of that, more than $200,000 is so old it can't be collected.

The studio agreed to pay $135,237 for service from 2002 to 2006. New York City Water Board regulations bar the city from billing customers for water and sewer use more than four years old.

The audit also said the studio underreported its income by $591,704, in part, because of improper deductions. Thompson said the studio paid rent on time, but underreported its net income, which is how the city calculates so-called additional rent payments.

"The audit results revealed that the studio is current on all payments due to New York City -- no additional monies are owed," the studio said in a statement.

Thompson said the studio disagreed with several findings and did not respond to his recommendations.

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