Nassau approves companies to reassess county properties

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MINEOLA -

Nassau legislators approved Monday the hiring of two companies to reassess properties across the county, although critics say the plan will negatively impact many homeowners.

Many lawmakers tell News 12 that high property taxes are the result of an outdated tax assessment system. Currently, lawmakers say some residents who grieved their taxes are paying less than their fair share, while others who didn't are likely paying too much.

That often includes those who can least afford to pay, like low-income individuals, senior citizens and the disabled, says Legislator Siela Bynoe (D-Woodbury).

On Monday, the Legislature voted to approve a measure backed by County Executive Laura Curran that will hire a pair of outside firms to reassess all county properties -- at the cost of $2.2 million. The goal, legislators say, is to fix the archaic system that's currently in place.

But Bynoe, who voted against the resolution, says it does not help those who have never grieved.

"This plan doesn't fix the issue of assessment," Bynoe says. "It actually prolongs and persists the issue and in some cases can make it worse."

Some residents say they don't mind paying a little extra if it means a better quality of life.

"I just hope that everything is fair," says Jennifer Gordon, of Plainview. "Everyone should pay their equal share."

Others, like Syosset's Nestor Cacanindin, say another tax increase would send them away from the county.

Curran has extended the deadline to grieve taxes to April 2.

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