Press-Republican

Education

February 21, 2014

AVCS to offer veterans tax exemption

CLINTONVILLE — Military veterans will receive a break on AuSable Valley Central School taxes in 2014-15.

Following Wednesday night’s public hearing on the matter, the School Board voted unanimously in favor of offering the Alternative Veterans Exemption at the base level.

“After a lengthy discussion, which included community input ... the AVCS Board felt that honoring our veterans with this exemption for their service and sacrifice to our country was the right thing to do at this time,” AuSable Valley School Board President Scott Bombard said in a statement provided to the Press-Republican by AVCS Superintendent Paul Savage.

Under real-property-tax law, the state’s counties, cities, towns and villages have long been able to exempt veterans from some property taxes. The option was extended to school districts in November 2013 via legislation signed by Gov. Andrew Cuomo.

The program classifies veterans as wartime, combat-zone and disabled, with wartime veterans eligible for the lowest exemptions and disabled, the highest.

Schools may also choose among several levels of tax breaks, which vary depending on the municipality.

Within the AVCS District, wartime veterans will be eligible for an exemption of up to $6,000; combat-zone veterans, up to $10,000; and disabled veterans, up to $30,000, depending on their disability rating, according to Scott Brow, AuSable Valley business executive.

This will result in a tax-rate increase estimated at 10 cents per $1,000 of assessed property value, Savage said.

In order for school districts to offer the tax breaks in 2014-15, they have to be authorized by March 1.

Northeastern Clinton Central and Plattsburgh City school boards have opted not to offer the exemptions next school year and instead to seek public input on the matter at their May 20 budget votes.

Email Ashleigh Livingston:alivingston@pressrepublican.com

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