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Letters: Taking on the issue of property tax assessments

Nassau County Executive Laura Curran signs an executive

Nassau County Executive Laura Curran signs an executive order on property assessment with new County Assessor David Moog on Sept. 26 in Mineola. Photo Credit: Howard Schnapp

I applaud Nassau County Executive Laura Curran for the bold and long overdue step of reducing the county’s level of assessment. Presiding Officer Richard Nicolello’s comment that 95 percent of residents face ruinous increases is irresponsible and demonstrates that he and his caucus lack the slightest knowledge of what assessment does and why revaluation now is necessary [“No scare tactics on Nassau taxes,” Editorial, Oct. 9].

Where was Nicolello’s outrage when County Executive Edward Mangano irresponsibly froze assessments, and then granted reductions on demand, forcing up school tax rates across the county by 5 percent a year.

To stabilize school tax bills and promote a fair, defendable system, someone had to act. With the advice of an independent consultant and a qualified assessor, David Moog, Curran correctly determined that the only way to capture the value from all the underassessed homes caused by Mangano’s recklessness and to assess at the required fair market value was to lower the level of assessment.

Having already failed the residents, perhaps the legislative majority should hire its own consultant. No doubt, that the consultant would agree with Curran’s plan, as it is the only responsible one.

Jeffrey B. Gold,Bellmore

Editor’s note: The writer is a former member of the Nassau Board of Assessors and a former commissioner of the Assessment Review Commission. He handles residential tax grievances in his work.

I’d like to suggest a paradigm shift. We should be thinking of how to lower people’s property taxes so that they can hopefully live on Long Island throughout their retirement years, especially since they have contributed so much to making it a great place to live.

While you talk about the huge, unfair gap in taxes for property owners who grieved their taxes versus those who did not, you fail to mention that the people who grieved did the right thing. Nassau County still offers brochures and coordinates town hall meetings to help people grieve their taxes.

Were we all wrong in following a process set up by our local leaders? How about we come up with a new process to assist those paying higher taxes, who haven’t grieved them, so that their taxes are brought down to the same level as those that did? Then we can all work on a process to reduce taxes even further to be more in line with other parts of the country. Now wouldn’t that be great?

Vincent Fabiano,Baldwin

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