Oswego Council OKs Local Law Regarding Taxation

OSWEGO, NY – At Monday night’s meeting the Common Council approved Local Law #3 of the year 2015, amending Chapter 224, Taxation, of the Code of the City of Oswego.

“It allows people to invest in their homes, invest in their neighborhoods without any immediate repercussions as it pertains to your taxes,” Councilor Bill Barlow pointed out. “Hopefully this will encourage people to invest in their homes.”

He cited Tom Reynolds, assistant city attorney, and Sue Deary, city assessor, for their help in moving the program forward. And he cited (Oswego) county legislators Shane Broadwell and Jake Mulcahey “who spearheaded this for the county.”

The local law allows for the exemption from taxes that portion of an increase in assessment to residential buildings occurring as a result of capital improvement, according to the assistant city attorney.

According to the law: an exemption can be for no more than $80,000 in increased market value due to reconstruction, alteration or improvement.

The amount of the exemption may be reduced below $80,000 but the cap can be no less than $5,000.

The value of the reconstruction, alteration or improvement must exceed a threshold of $3,000.

The greater portion of the structure as determined by square footage of the building to be reconstructed, altered or improved must be at least five years old.

A home would be appraised after the improvement is done, the city assessor explained. She will appraise the home as a whole and then look at the improvement portion to see what fair market value that would add.

“So, I’d actually appraise it with the improvement and without the improvement,” she said.

“We want people to invest in their homes and neighborhoods,” Mayor Tom Gillen said. “This is one way of helping them do that.”

More than just the homeowners will benefit from this, according to Seventh Ward Councilor Ron Kaplewicz.

There will be some contractors who’ll be happy to get a lot of work, he added.

The local law shall become effective upon filing in the office of the Secretary of State.

For further information, contact the Assessor’s Office at 342-8103.