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Amityville eyes changes to property assessment process

Amityville Village Hall in 2014.

Amityville Village Hall in 2014. Credit: Steve Pfost

Amityville Village may appoint an independent board to review property assessments, adopting a practice followed by most villages on Long Island.

The village’s trustees now perform that function, an unusual dual role that trustee Nick LaLota said at a recent work session creates a potential conflict of interest.

“We have a fiduciary responsibility to protect our tax rolls,” he said. “Yet when a petitioner comes before us, we want to satisfy our constituent.”

The board would rule on contested property tax assessments for both residential and commercial properties.

More than 100 property owners contested their assessments this year, though only about 10 cases resulted in formal hearings before the Village Board at tax grievance day last month, clerk-treasurer Dina Shingleton said.

The composition of what would likely be a three-person board of assessment has not yet been decided.

LaLota proposed a three-person board composed of the chairs from Zoning, Planning and Parks boards, but trustee Dennis Siry questioned whether those office holders would have the necessary real estate knowledge.

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