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Wednesday, July 1, 2015
Veterans in East Rockaway were granted a school tax exemption last week, while a similar resolution was denied in Lynbrook.
News
Veterans school tax exemption denied in Lynbrook, approved in E.R.
Brian Croce/Herald
Kevin Canty, right, commander of the VFW post in Lynbrook, told the school board that its “no” vote tarnished the image of the village’s motto: “Lynbrook USA.” Ex-commander Pat Cardone, left, wanted more involvement in the process.

Veterans who live in East Rockaway will see some relief on their tax bills in the future after the Board of Education passed a veterans tax exemption last week. School board members in Lynbrook voted down a similar resolution on Feb. 26, sparking indignation among local veterans.

Veterans living in New York have been eligible for state, county, town and village tax exemptions, but in December the State Legislature passed a law giving school boards the option to offer an exemption as well.

Lynbrook board members rejected the resolution in a 6-0 vote, citing a shift in the tax burden from veterans to non-veterans if it were approved. Trustee Cathy Papandrew was not present.

“I have a hard time asking our community to pay more in taxes,” Trustee Ellen Marcus said prior to the vote. “Even though we come within the tax cap and do the best we can, our taxes continue to go up.”

In districts that passed the exemption, the assessed value of veterans’ homes will be reduced, and they will pay less in school taxes. The exemption has three categories, each with its own range by which the assessed value of a home is reduced: wartime veteran in a non-combat zone (up to $12,000), wartime veteran in a combat zone (up to $20,000) and wartime veteran in a combat zone who now has a disability (up to $60,000).

In Lynbrook, the average non-veteran’s school taxes would have increased by $37 per year if the resolution had been approved. A total of 412 veterans live in the district, and more than a dozen attended a March of them 12 board meeting to voice their disapproval of the board’s decision. Board President Alicemarie Bresnihan said that the board voted against the resolution because it did not include a means test — meaning that wealthy veterans would get the same exemption as those on fixed incomes.

Joe Costello, a veteran who has lived in Lynbrook for about 20 years, said the board’s decision shouldn’t have had anything to do with a means test. “It’s about what can we do for these people who made sacrifices for this country,” Costello said. “This is where we were able to put our money where our mouth is in this community, and we didn’t do it. We fell short.”

Comments

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1blondemom

I'm not sure why everyone is so surprised at the way they school board voted. They never consult anyone, their meetings are clandestine and self-serving. If they really wanted to, they could find the money to support this exemption for the Veterans who live in our district. It's about time the people of Lynbrook see the school board for what it really is.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014 | Report this
proudcitizen

no tax exemption for one gold star family? cancel the memorial day parade in lynbrook. it has no meaning.

Thursday, March 20, 2014 | Report this
Navairvet

The decision to deny this tax exemption to Lynbrook SD 20 Veterans and one Gold Star Family was made by only six people. That's right, six people made the decision for all of Lynbrook SD 20 residents on whether or not each homeowner is willing to spend $37. a year in additional school tax as a way of honoring those who have given so much of themselves to provide us all with the safety, security and freedom we all enjoy as Americans. Without these brave men and woman there are no school boards. Without them there isn't much of anything.

Doesn't seem right does it.

Thursday, March 20, 2014 | Report this
MARINE90

@PROUD IT HAS NO MEANING TO THE 6 PEOPLE ON THE BORED THAT VOTED NO! IT HAS MEANINING TO MANY OTHERS . MAYBEE THOSE SIX SHOULD NOT BE INVITED!

IT IS SAD , UNDER AN ESTIMATED TWO HUNDRED THOUSAND DOLLARS OF AN ALONST 80 MILLION DOLLAR BUDGET! THANKS ... SEE YOU AT THE NEXT ELECTION! SEMPER FI!

Thursday, March 20, 2014 | Report this
deathstar1

So when the taxes go up, everyone gets mad. Now when they do something to PREVENT everyone's taxing going up, people are still mad. Guess they can't win anyway you look at it.

Thursday, March 20, 2014 | Report this
1blondemom

@deathstar1 perhaps a little more scrutinizing would enable them to find the money. They sure know how to spend....

Thursday, March 20, 2014 | Report this
deathstar1

1blondemom, I don't pretend to know all the facts, but if there not approving an exemption, doesn't that mean they are saving the rest of the taxpayers from a raise in school taxes?

Thursday, March 20, 2014 | Report this
deathstar1

Don't they already get exemptions from the village, the town of Hempstead, and the County?

Thursday, March 20, 2014 | Report this
Navairvet

deathstar1, the law passed by the Governor was put in the school districts hands to approve or disapprove with "community input" ............. did the community aka each taxpayer in SD20 get to vote or even voice an opinion before the board decided? The answer is no.

Thursday, March 20, 2014 | Report this
1blondemom

@deathstar1, you do know all the facts. They did not approve the exemption. No further details shared. Are they saving the rest of the taxpayers money? Sure simply in denying this exemption. Could they find it somewhere else in their budget I bet they could. If it were a new set design, or new band uniforms, or new ipads, or the best of whatever else other schools have they would find a way to pay for it.

Have you ever read over the budget and what they spend on? Log onto the homepage of Lynbrook schools and take a peek at the budget numbers under the finance tab http://www.lynbrookschools.org/schools pretty amazing.

Thursday, March 20, 2014 | Report this
deathstar1

Navairet, unfortunately apathy is a big part of this. How many people actually attend a village board meeting or a School board meeting? How would people know about anything if they dont attend? !blondemom, I will look at the budget.

Thursday, March 20, 2014 | Report this
deathstar1

And can anyone answer my question. don't they already get exemptions from the village, Town of Hempstead, and county??

Thursday, March 20, 2014 | Report this
STEVEYO

Its about time the board cut us a break. Unfortunately it was terribly shortsighted.To save the taxpayers a measly three buck's a month out of the $1000.00 plus we pay ! On the backs of our veterans.What a disgrace. Shame on you!

Friday, March 21, 2014 | Report this
MARINE90

@ deathstar . Yes a break is given on county and town.

This was voted on at a budget meeting in Feb. Not the monthly meeting . It appears under old buisness on the agenda for march . But never under new business for Jan. Or Feb. Why is that?? Go to the website and see for yourself. And no agenda posted for budget. See you at the poles!

Friday, March 21, 2014 | Report this
schools

This is really not the time to be giving veterans an additional tax break on school taxes, asking every resident in East Rockaway to pay an additional $49 when there are some that have still not recovered from the hurricane. I don't understand why the state legislature felt the need to pass this legislation in a time of escalating taxes and all the other problems we are facing, this seems more like pandering for the next election.

Friday, March 21, 2014 | Report this
Navairvet

@ schools...good time - bad time.....give it - don't give it.....these are topics of discussion that all concerned should have been given the option to way in on before the decision was handed down by the board.....not discussing it here after the fact.

Friday, March 21, 2014 | Report this
deathstar1

Navairvet, maybe if people actually showed up at school board meetings and village board meetings, they would know what was going on??

Friday, March 21, 2014 | Report this
deathstar1

marine90, the exemption is given by the town of Hempstead and the County already? I also understand the village gives it also?

Friday, March 21, 2014 | Report this
MARINE90

@SCHOOLS, YOU MAKE A VALID POINT . I THINK ALL THE VETERANS WANTED WAS A SAY ! TO BE HEARD! GO TO THE WEBSITE . ILL SAY IT AGAIN , HOW WAS THIS VOTED ON AT A BUDGET MEETING AND NOT A MONTHLY MEETING, AND THEN LISTED AS OLD BUISNESS ON AGENDA FOR MARCH BUT NOT LISTED UNDER NEW BUISNESS IN JAN OR FEB? AND THE CLAIM IT WAS DISCUSSED BY THE PRESIDENT ON TWO OCCASSIONS........WHEN.AS FAR AS MAKING UP THE DIFFERENCE... WHY DO THE REST OF THE RESIDENTS NEED TO PAY? THERE IS SO MUCH WASTED SPENDING. DOES ANYONE REALLY FEEL SAFER WITH THOSE CONES ON THE STREET IN FRONT OF THE HIGH SCHOOL PUT OUT BY A SECURITY GAURD. I HAVE AND AM PUTTING KIDS THROUGH THE DISTRICT. AND ALTHOUGH I DONT ALWAYS LIKE WHAT I SEE, I USED TO BELIEVE IT WAS ALWAYS DONE FOR THE BEST OF THE STUDENTS AND RESIDENTS . BUT THE WAY THIS WAS DONE IS UNACCEPTABLE!

SEE YOU AT THE POLES !

Friday, March 21, 2014 | Report this
MARINE90

@DEATH

I BELIEVE THE VILLAGE ADOPTED A COLD WAR TAX EXCEMPTION, AND WHY ARE YOU ASKING QUESTIONS YOU ALREADY KNOW THE ANSWER TO.

I AGREE WITH YOU ON ATTENDANCE AND IF I ACTUALLY SAT BACK AND DID NOTHING I WOULD FEEL BAD , BUT SOMETIMES SCHEDULES GET CRAZY . BUT I DO CHECK THE WEBSITE FOR THE BOARD AND THE VILLAGE AND IF I SEE SOMETHING I ASK QUESTIONS? DID YOU GO TO THE WEBSITE AND SEE WHAT I MEANT ABOUT THE POSTING IN THE AGENDA? PERSEPTION IS EVERYTHING!

Friday, March 21, 2014 | Report this
MARINE90

@DEATH

I BELIEVE THE VILLAGE ADOPTED A COLD WAR TAX EXCEMPTION, AND WHY ARE YOU ASKING QUESTIONS YOU ALREADY KNOW THE ANSWER TO.

I AGREE WITH YOU ON ATTENDANCE AND IF I ACTUALLY SAT BACK AND DID NOTHING I WOULD FEEL BAD , BUT SOMETIMES SCHEDULES GET CRAZY . BUT I DO CHECK THE WEBSITE FOR THE BOARD AND THE VILLAGE AND IF I SEE SOMETHING I ASK QUESTIONS? DID YOU GO TO THE WEBSITE AND SEE WHAT I MEANT ABOUT THE POSTING IN THE AGENDA? PERSEPTION IS EVERYTHING!

Friday, March 21, 2014 | Report this
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