OSWEGO, NY – Following some lengthy committee meetings and another debate regarding the 2011-12 budget Tuesday night, the Oswego City School District board of education members convened for a brief meeting.
There were three items on the agenda.
Board members voted 6-0-1 on the first – a decision to appeal the state Supreme Court ruling that dismissed the district’s petition challenging the tax agreement with Nine Mile Point Unit I.
Board president Dave White was absent.
In early March, State Supreme Court Justice Hugh Gilbert dismissed the district’s petition.
According to Kevin C. Caraccioli, the town’s attorney, Justice Gilbert dismissed the petition stating, “It should not have been filed as a challenge to the assessment set by the Scriba Board of Assessment Review.”
The assessment can be challenged only in a tax grievance petition, the judge ruled.
The school district can’t use this procedure to challenge the assessment, he said, adding that only the property owner (Scriba) can file a tax grievance.
According to the district’s resolution, the board of education disagrees with Gilbert’s decision and authorizes its outside counsel, Paul T. Sheppard, “to file a notice of appeal.”
Last summer, the county, Scriba and the district negotiated a one-year tax deal Constellation Nuclear Energy Group, the owners of the power plant.
Scriba and the county approved it; the school district didn’t.
The district began the challenge in an attempt to receive more tax revenue from the plant than it would receive under the deal.
The Scriba Board of Assessment Review assessed the nuclear power plant at $280 million.
The school district claimed the plant’s assessed value was $600 million, according to a New Hampshire firm that specializes in appraising nuclear power plants.
The other two agenda items, both of which were approved Tuesday night, were filing of the budget for the school year 2011 – 2012 and proposition #1 (the 2011 – 2012 tentative budget) for the May 17 budget vote.
The budget proposal is $74, 744,748 and contains a zero percent tax levy increase.