In an effort to increase revenue without raising taxes on everybody, Monroe County Executive Maggie Brooks has called for a Reassessment of all properties in Monroe County to increase revenue by taxing those who can afford it the most, wealthy property owners and absentee lanldlords.
This may seem like a very un-Republican thing to do, but Maggie Brooks has made her reputation by not raising the county tax rate. That’s one of the reasons she gets re-elected so handily.
Brooks understands that property values change and that property assessments often don’t reflect the changes.
That is very true in Brockport where many student rental houses are grossly under assessed.
The property description on the tax records is often quite different from the description that is reported by the Code Enforcement Office. For example, 45-47 Erie Street is on the tax records as a 2 -family home with two 3 bedroom apartments. The Code Enforcement Office describes the property as a 2-family with a 4 bedroom apartment and a 5 bedroom apartment. That’s a 33% increase in the number of apartments.
The Code Enforcement Office may be working off the Residential Rental Statement that is required by law to be sent to the Codes Office each year by the property owner.
Another discrepancy is when the tax record states that the property is a single family with 6 bedroom s, 2 bathrooms, but the Code Enforcement Office reports that the property has 2 apartments with 4 bedrooms each as at 23 Park Ave. That property has an assessed value of only $84,400.
Also, the Webster family owns 15 rental houses that are assessed as single-family houses – Property Class: 210, when in fact they are no longer single-family houses.
Take 15 Maxon Street, the old Charlie Zimmer place. It is assessed at $73,200, but Fred Webster bought it at auction in 1997 for only $42,000.
Since 15 Maxon Street is a single family house, by law it can only be occupied by three unrelated people. But there are usually seven cars in the driveway, and since the house has 5 bedrooms, you can assume that more than three unrelated people are living in that house. When Fred Webster was asked about it, he smugly replied, “Oh they’re all related.”
If you believe that you probably also believe that the world is flat, that the sun revolves around the earth, and that the sun rises in the west and sets in the east.
Last year there were 10 police calls to 15 Maxon Street. That’s an awful lot of police calls for three unrelated people.
If the property were to be reassessed as an income-producing property instead of a single-family home (which it is not), then the property assessment would undoubtedly increase, thus reducing the tax burden on single-family home owners in Brockport.