Volunteer firefighters and ambulance workers in Nassau County will be able to qualify for a tax break a bit sooner than before.
The Nassau County Legislature unanimously passed a local law to lower the number of years that volunteer firefighters and ambulance workers need to serve before qualifying for a partial tax exemption on their county portion of their property taxes.
Prior to the law going into effect, volunteer firefighters and EMTs had to serve for five years before qualifying. The new law drops that threshold to two years of service to qualify for a property tax exemption of up to 10 percent. To qualify, a volunteer must live in the community where they volunteer.
In addition, volunteers who accrue 20 or more years of service will be granted the reduction for the remainder of the time that they reside in Nassau County, regardless of whether they are active or inactive from volunteering.
Local municipalities will need to opt in to this new law to allow the same exemption to be applied to their portion of property taxes.
“These selfless volunteers answer the call of duty at all hours of the day and night, put their own safety at risk for the community and spend an incredible amount of time in training and preparing to do the job they do so well,” Legislator Richard Nicolello said in a release. “The partial real property tax exemption should also help with recruitment to keep our fire departments strong.”