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Letter: Obfuscation In Seniors’ County Taxes

If you checked your most recent county real estate tax bill (for Jan-Dec 2014) to confirm that you were credited with your senior abatement on your county taxes, you will find no information. In fact, there was no way to verify credit for my senior abatement for 2014 except to ask the Glen Cove Assessor’s office for the amount, if any, that was credited for senior abatement on my current bill.

Thus alarmed, I checked previous county tax bills and found not only that senior abatements had not been itemized in any year after 2010, but also that neither the “Rate per $100” nor the “County Tax” itemized on each bill after 2010 represented the full county tax before abatements. Only the tax bill for 2010 itemized the following  six quantities, which must appear as a minimum on every proper bill:  Fair Market Value $, Senior Abatement $, Total Tax Levy $, County Tax Rate per $100 & Amount $ (both before abatement), and Net Tax Due $ (now called “Total”). It is also meaningless and confusing to itemize a Rate per $100 after abatement. In the future Nassau County should be required to issue fully and clearly itemized bills.

You may ask, why does the county short-change us in its billing? I believe it is done deliberately in order to promote the myth of  “no tax increases.”

It seems apparent that Nassau County has used obfuscation in its tax bills with their lack of accounting for senior abatements,  to hide the fact that the County Rate of Real Estate taxation has increased from $71.1840/C in 2010 to a peak of $116.373/C in 2013 (over 16 percent). These increases  in the County Tax Rate were mandated to compensate for the fact that assessed values were “frozen” for the last three years and the fact that the county tax base has dropped from $14.4 million for 2010 to $10.1million (23 percent)  for 2014.

Mr. Mangano:  It is long past time for you to fulfill your promise to completely reorganize the operations of the Nassau County Department of Assessment and to cease your dependence on obfuscation. To your credit, the Total Tax Levy has varied little from its average of  $9.8 million over the years 2010-2014.

Ted Holmes

News

The Raise The Roof Concert, held at Christ Church on Nov. 9, was an intergenerational event to benefit the Life Enrichment Center of Oyster Bay’s seniors.

Board member Suzanne Paolucci explained the center’s wish to get iPods for the seniors as a source of musical therapy. She brought the idea to the center from a talk by social worker Dan Cohen, the founder of Music & Memory. He has produced a film, Alive Inside, that tells the story of music as being restorative. Music is like therapy for the elderly, in particular for those with dementia, as it has been shown to awaken memories of happier times in life, when energy and enthusiasm were boundless.

Driving rain and an early start time did not deter 600 people who arrived at Crest Hollow Country Club recently to celebrate the Women’s Fund of Long Island’s 20th year and to honor four exceptional women.

The breakfast started with a meet and greet and a chance to showcase Women’s Fund contest winner Patti Hogarty, designer of “Women as Bamboo.” Inspired by her neighbor’s bamboo, she entered the contest drawing a design of the bamboo, which Ambalu Jewelers of Roslyn then turned into various pendants of which 40-percent of the profits would go to WFLI. Hogarty wrote a short essay comparing women to bamboo in that they are strong and can weather difficult storms, yet remain graceful and continue to grow sending out new shoots.


Sports

On the weekend of Nov. 8, the Oyster Bay High School Boys and Girls Cross Country teams traveled to the State University of New York at Canton just a few miles from the Canadian border to compete in the New York State Cross Country Championships.

Alex Tosi became the first Bayman since Joe Jazwinski and Justin Nakrin (2008) to become All-State, placing 16th with a time of 16:53. Most runners ran about 20 seconds slower than their Bethpage times because of the muddy conditions on the course. Tosi’s time was basically equivalent to his best Bethpage time, as he powered through the toughest parts of the race. He led the Baymen to a seventh place finish in the Class C race, an improvement from their 11th place finish last year, which ties the highest place at the New York State Championships of a Baymen team since 2009.

In the history of Oyster Bay High School athletics, no one has ever won a Girls’ Tennis New York State Championship. Celeste Matute and Courtney Kowalsky became the first when they won the 2014 New York State Doubles Championship in Latham on Nov. 3. What makes this tremendous achievement even more remarkable is that Matute is a junior and Kowalsky is a sophomore.

The girls, who are usually singles players, teamed up to take on the very best players in Nassau County and New York State. They won all 10 matches in the section XIII and NYSPHSAA tournaments and left Latham as the 2014 New York State doubles champions.


Calendar

Annual Turkey Trot

Thursday, Nov. 27

Turkey Detox Workshop

Friday, Nov. 28

East Norwich Holiday

Sunday, Nov. 30



Columns

1959: The Year The Music Stopped Playing
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