Carmel Civic Assoc. to Hold Talk on Town-Wide Reassessment

Reassessment may impact the amount your property taxes.
Reassessment may impact the amount your property taxes.

How would a town-wide property reassessment impact Town of Carmel homeowners and the amount of local and school taxes they pay?

That will be the subject of an upcoming public meeting to be held by the Carmel Civic Association at 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, April 19 in the meeting room at the Carmel Fire House located at 94 Gleneida Avenue.

Carmel Civic Association President Frank Chianca said Carmel Town Assessor Glenn Droese and George Michaud from Putnam County Real Property Services would be on-hand to answer questions from community members who attend.

Chianca said the meeting is a follow-up to one the association held last month to ask Carmel Central School District Assistant Superintendent of Business Eric Stark questions about the tax rate residents of the Hamlet of Carmel pay to the school district compared to the residents of other surrounding towns who live inside and whose children attend Carmel schools.

The answer they were given was that an equalization rate determined by the state and applied to Hamlet of Carmel homeowners created parity with the amount taxes that residents in those other towns are paying.

The disparity comes from the fact that the Town of Carmel has not done a reassessment of the full market value of properties in town since 1996. On the other hand, with the exception of the Town of Philipstown, the other towns in Putnam County served by the Carmel School District have done a reassessment in recent years.

Highlighting that the issue is a hot topic, mention of it was made in Putnam County Executive MaryEllen Odell’s State of the County address last month.

It’s also been a topic of discussion at Carmel Town Board meetings, but not as of late.

In 2010, the Town Board participated in three discussions with the former Town Assessor Paul Jonke, who recommended that a full reassessment be done, and with a representative from the New York State   Office of Real Property Tax Services who offered the findings of some research.

The state representative offered the example of two homes recently sold in the Town of Carmel in the same year for the same price: $305,000. He told the Carmel Town Board that although both homes had the same market value, one was being taxes at an assessed value – based on the 1996 assessment – that was $50,000 more than the other.

Additionally, the state representative said that a review of home sales during a recent one-year period showed that while the average selling price for a house was $425,000, the average taxable assessment of those homes was in the area of $219,000.

If the Town of Carmel decided to conduct a reassessment of property values, it has been discussed at public meetings that it would cost an estimated $350,000; money that is not budgeted and would have to be borrowed.

“We, as an organization, are not pushing for one way or another. We are getting clarification,” Chianca said of the purpose of the meeting. “We encourage the public to come so that everyone can try to get a better handle on how the whole system works.”

Chianca said that Carmel Councilman Jonathan Schneider and Carmel Councilwoman Suzanne McDonough attended the March meeting and that all of the members of the Carmel Town Board were invited to attend the meeting next week.

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