Tuesday is property tax Grievance Day for homeowners

Tuesday is Grievance Day throughout New York State, the day where property owners can formally challenge their tax assessments.

Grievances are aired before a board of assessment review, which is independent from the town assessors, who made the assessments in the first place.

In Riverhead, the board of assessment review is comprised of Marjorie Acevedo, Brian Mills and Judy O’Connell.

There will be two grievance sessions in Riverhead Town on May 15. One will run from 10 a.m. to noon, and the other from 6-8 p.m.

Property owners also can filed grievances in writing prior, with May 15 being the last day to do so.

Last year in Riverhead Town, more than 1,800 grievances were filed, but only 10 people actually showed up to protest their tax assessments in person on Grievance Day, according to assessor Laverne Tennenberg.

The town publishes its tentative tax rolls on its web site in advance of grievance day.

Overall the town’s assessment increased by less than one percent over the previous year, according to the tentative numbers.

Ms. Tennenberg says the assessment number is likely to decrease before final numbers are adopted in the fall, once the impact of tax grievances, court rulings and small claims court rulings are factored in.

The tentative rolls also shows an increase of less than one percent in the assessed value of the Riverhead School District in Riverhead Town.

The school district also covers parts of Southampton Town and a small portion of Brookhaven Town.

In Southampton Town, the tentative tax rolls shows the portion of the Riverhead School District in that town with a 3.4 percent decrease in assessment.

Southampton Town’s grievance day sessions will be held at the St. Rosalie’s Church auditorium in Hampton Bays, from 9:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., 2-4 p.m.,and 6-8 p.m.

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