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N.Y. Land Owners Get Tax Relief

Spitzer signs assessment relief for flood-damaged property.

New York Governor Eliot Spitzer signed legislation providing tax relief to property owners who sustained significant damage from last summer's floods. In June and July, severe flooding hit many areas of upstate New York, including Central New York, the Southern Tier and the Mohawk Valley.

A federal disaster was declared for 20 counties. The State Emergency Management Office estimated that, in the hardest-hit counties - Broome, Chenango, Delaware, Herkimer, Montgomery, Oneida, Orange, Otsego, Schoharie, Sullivan, Tioga and Ulster - more than 8,600 homes were destroyed or received significant damage.

The Flood Assessment Relief Act of 2007 will provide the 20 hardest-hit counties with the option of allowing property owners in flood-impacted municipalities to seek reductions in their assessed property value.

"This act, together with a $5 million appropriation included in the 2007-2008 State Budget, this act will provided much needed relief for property owners and the municipalities hardest hit by the devastating floods of last summer," Governor Spitzer said.

In the taxing jurisdictions that choose to participate, those taxpayers whose properties were "catastrophically impacted" by the flooding – those who lost at least 50% of the value – would be entitled to seek adjustment of the properties' assessed value either by seeking review by the Board of Assessment Review or by seeking administrative correction of the tax roll.

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