Lockport Union-Sun & Journal Online

Local News

July 25, 2013

Town nixes total revaluations

Lockport Union-Sun & Journal — It’s very likely the Town of Lockport will not face a townwide property revaluation next year.

However, the town will continue its annual reassessment program, Supervisor Marc R. Smith said at a Wednesday Town Board work session. The annual program looks at a fraction of the properties in the town, usually about a quarter of the town’s 7,500 total properties each year.

Smith said Town Assessor Jill Lederhouse will stay in contact with the state, so things could change. But for now, the high cost and the annual revaluation negates the need for townwide revaluation, Smith said. The cost would have been about $60,000.

”There was a time when the cost wasn’t so high for us to do a revaluation,” Smith said. “When we started looking at the numbers, we just shook our heads and asked why would we do that if we are at 100 percent.”

The reason for the townwide reassessment was two-fold. First, a number of homes in the town were sold above current value. And second, the state would have paid $5 per parcel.

Properties have been reassessed each year, as part of the town’s attempt at keeping properties at a 100 percent equalization rate. In 2012, about 2,400 properties were reassessed. The last townwide revaluation was in 2009.

Keeping the equalization rate at 100 percent affects tax exemptions as Albany would force taxpayers to make up the difference if the rate falls below 100.

The equalization rate is the state’s measure of a municipality’s level of assessment. The rate is the ratio of total assessed value to the municipality’s total market value. So, the town’s property is assessed at full market value.

• In other town news, Crocker said the Niagara County Refuse District will be holding a household hazardous waste drop off event on Aug. 17 at the Town Hall on Dysinger Road. The drop off will run from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. and an appointment is preferred.

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