Northern New York Newspapers
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NNY Living
Sat., Feb. 28
Serving the community of Ogdensburg, New York

Reval & Taxes

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To The Editor:

Hypothetically let’s say I live in the town of Potsdam and in the NN School District. My 2012 property assessment was at $100,000. In 2013, my assessed value went up 20 percent (appoximate for township) so now my assessment is at $120,000. The state pushes the town to go to 100 percent level of assessment. This is how the figures work out.

The town lowered its cost per thousand, but due to the increase in assessment I will pay an additional $13.11 in town tax. I will also pay an additional $326.30 in county tax, $15.87 in library tax, $19.15 in fire tax, $5.15 in chargeback tax, and about $616 in NN school taxes (approximated because the business manager is on vacation until after Memorial Day).

So when an official from the town or county tells you that simply because your assessment increased doesn’t mean your tax burden will increase, please ask them these two questions.

1.) If assessments have nothing to do with generating tax revenues then why even have property taxes and why raise assessment levels at all?

2.) Why do I pay more in tax if the cost per thousand does not change or goes down (as is the case in the town of Potsdam)?

If my assessment had remained unchanged at $100,000, I still would have paid more in tax to the county, the school and for fire protection.

And if you get an honest answer to those two questions I will be extremely surprised. You’ll hear responses about how models and data are used to generate assessments. But what does that tell you? Apparently all that processing of data and modeling is a highly complex and confounding process better left to computers that have incorrect information fed them.

You’ll hear that the cost per thousand could go down, but it rarely does. You will never get a clear honest answer, at least I never have. And my taxes keep going up and up and up.

So go figure why folks are upset with the 2013 revaluation?

Tracey Haggett-Sloan

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