Saratoga County to Hold Public Hearing Regarding Property Tax Law – The Daily Gazette

SPA BALLSTON – The Saratoga County Board of Supervisors is seeking feedback from residents on proposed changes to the property tax law that would increase income eligibility for seniors seeking an exemption at a public hearing scheduled for October 12.

Milton City Supervisor Scott Ostrander and Saratoga County Board of Supervisors Chairman Theodore Kusnierz Jr., Moreau’s supervisor, worked together on the idea in response to the economic climate people are facing .

“Inflation and rising costs of basic necessities are having a major impact [on] our seniors who live on fixed incomes,” said Kusnierz Jr. “Increasing the level of income eligibility for a property tax exemption will provide these seniors with much-needed tax relief at a time when national inflation is the highest we’ve ever seen.”

Inflation is at its highest in four decades, Ostrander said.

In its ongoing effort to try to fight inflation, the Federal Reserve recently raised interest rates again and signaled that more hikes are to come.

Under the state property tax law, local municipalities can grant a reduction in property taxes paid by seniors.

Saratoga County currently provides a 20% reduction for those with annual incomes below $20,700, with a maximum reduction of 50% for those with incomes below $15,000, said Christine Rush, director of county public relations.

She said the public hearing will help the county decide how much to raise the income eligibility level.

Currently, 2,650 Saratoga County seniors benefit from the tax exemption.

“While the exact number depends on the income level decided, we anticipate this change will increase the pool of eligible seniors, providing tax relief to even more Saratoga County residents,” Rush said.

If adopted, residents wishing to apply will need to do so through the county assessor’s office.

State eligibility criteria are based on age, property status, residency and occupation, and income, Rush said. She also said the change would not affect the county’s budget.

“Even while providing our low-income seniors with a much-needed property tax exemption, we are confident that Saratoga County will continue to provide our homeowners with the lowest property tax rate in New York State. “, said Rush.

Revenue requirements in the county are expected to be discussed at the property tax committee’s next meeting on Oct. 4, Ostrander said. A discussion of the amounts of income to be allowed was finally tabled at the committee’s last meeting, although figures of around $30,000 were mentioned for discussion, Ostrander said.

“Everyone was in favor of doing the program for seniors, but we’re waiting to come up with a number at the next meeting,” Ostrander said.

Ostrander said he had discussed with the City of Milton Assessor’s Office the possibility of setting up a similar program at the city level.

The changes don’t affect school property taxes because those are separate from the county, Ostrander said.

If adopted in the town of Milton, Ostrander said he plans to reach out to seniors to let them know about the program. He also said he would suggest spreading information throughout the county. Ostrander said he hopes the measure will pass in October.

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