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Posted on June 10, 2013 at 11:27 AM by PattiAnn Schultz
Recently my wife and I downsized into a smaller home and I received a letter from “The Tax Opposer” stating, “If your property taxes are too high, it is directly due to the fact that your Assessment is too high.” As your Town Supervisor I can directly tell you that this statement is just a bunch of baloney; it ‘s completely inaccurate, false, misleading and a whole bunch of other adjectives that make me upset.
Your assessment on your home and your tax bill are two separate items that you need to consider. Your assessment is the value of your home and your tax bill is just that – a tax bill based on your accurate assessment and the budgets.
Assessments in the Town of Webster have not gone up since the end 2004 which is the last year the town did a town-wide revaluation of each and every parcel in the Town of Webster. Since that time if you, or a person representing you, have not come to town hall to take out a building permit for a garage, home addition, or any other home improvement, your assessment HAS NOT gone up. So, your assessment in 2005 and today would be exactly the same.
Has your tax bill gone up? YES. Why? The Webster Central School District, Monroe County, Town of Webster, or the Village of Webster has raised your tax rate not your assessment. In the case of the School District you vote to raise or lower your taxes, as for the town, County, and village representatives voted on by you the people voted themselves to raise your taxes. In any or all cases assessment had nothing to do with your tax bill going up since 2005 because your assessment hasn’t moved a bit since that date unless you made improvements or built a new home.
So please do not let someone try and convince you that your assessment is the reason for your taxes being higher because it is just not true. Example: come September, 2013 when you have to pay your new School Tax Bill, it will be up by at least 61 cents per thousand of your assessment because the Webster voters just voted to raise the taxes they pay for school services. This has nothing to do with the town assessment of your property. The current school tax rate will go from $22.90 to $23.51, the Town rate is $4.49 and the County rate is $9.32. The combined tax rate for a house outside the Village of Webster is $37.32 before any additional charges for sewer, lighting, water district or other charges you may have occurred that could be added to your bill.
In 2005 the school tax rate was $21.99 per thousand of assessment and the new September rate will be around $23.51 per thousand. So if you house was assessed at $165,000 in 2005 and with no improvements it is still at $165,000 assessment that means your School Tax Bill has gone up $1.52 per thousand or $250.80 in the last nine years. In the same time period, the town tax was $4.16 per thousand in 2005 and $4.49 per thousand in 2013 or up 33 cents for the same house assessed at $165,000 house or an increase of $54.45.
Now, if you think your taxes are too high, you have to go back to the board that is responsible for putting together that particular budget and either talk to them or change the board in the future for a different outcome to their budget.
In the case of the town, if you do not like the $4.49 per thousand is the town tax rate, you need to change the board managing the budget and that would include me.
In the case of the School District, if you do not like the fact that $23.51 per thousand is the school tax rate, you would need to vote to change the Board of Education.
In the case of the County, if you do not like the $9.32 per thousand tax rate, you will need to vote to change the two county legislators you have representing you here in Webster and hope you could get a majority of the Legislature to think your way.
I hope I have succeeded in explaining the difference between assessment and tax bills here in Webster. Assessments are not your problem when you think that your current tax bill is high; higher budgets are the problem within the budgets being presented to you each year because we have not changed your assessment since 2004.
I cannot be any more honest or upfront about this topic than this, so if you have any questions about your town government, please feel free to contact me during regular business hours at (585) 872-7068; or email me anytime at firstname.lastname@example.org
Ronald W. Nesbitt