With just over 13 hours left for Nassau County residents to grieve property assessments for the 2020-2021 tax year, Nassau County had apparently set a record for its most appeals ever. And they are still coming.
But the county is extending the deadlines, because the Assessment Review Commission’s website has crashed several times over the past 24 hours.
County officials said the deadlines will now be:
- Online until 11:59 p.m. on Friday, May 3, 2019
- Paper submission at ARC until 4:45 p.m. on Friday, May 3, 2019 or postmarked by May 3, 2019
- ARC customer service will be open April 30, 2019 until 7 p.m.
At 10:47 a.m. the county, which has about 424,000 properties on its tax rolls, had received 245,908 appeals.
Last year, there were 241,011 appeals, which county officials said was the most anyone could remember. There were about 216,000 appeals filed in 2017.
The county is seeking to create an accurate roll for the first time since former Ccunty Executive Edward Mangano froze the roll in 2011 and started granting wholesale reductions to nearly all who sought them. The property tax-appeal firms that made more than $500 million on such appeals since 2011 have gone all-out this year to grab as many new clients as possible.
New values mean a fresh whack at huge reductions, with the firms keeping a big slice. And there is an awareness that if County Executive Laura Curran’s plan to get the roll in order works, the days of huge paydays are numbered for the appeal firms.
The numbers tell it all: This year, 208,911 of the appeals have been filed by firms, while 36,997 have been filed by individuals.
Once the appeals are all in, the county will be moving to argue and settle as many as possible before tax rolls and millage amounts are set for the county, towns, school districts and other taxing bodies in Nassau. Settlements reached after tax bills go out will generate refunds that must be paid entirely by the county, no matter which government got the overpayment.
The hope among county officials is that this year will be the high-water mark of appeals, with property owners increasingly deciding the assigned values are fair and dropping the grieving habit.
Time will tell.