Sunday, April 05, 2009


Greenburgh Town Supervisor Paul Feiner is calling on the county to change the law to make it easier for taxpayers to pay their county/town/fire district tax bills. Currently, taxpayers must pay the entire tax bill by April 30th. Local governments are not authorized to accept partial tax payments. If a taxpayer is unable to pay the entire tax bill in April they are assessed penalties on the entire bill.
These are difficult times for many people - especially seniors on fixed incomes and people who recently lost their jobs. Many people cannot pay their entire tax obligations all at once.
Feiner believes that the county should consider amending the law so that taxpayers would not have to pay the entire tax bill at once. "It would be easier on taxpayers if property owners could pay part of the bill in the spring and the balance later in the year."
Feiner is also suggesting that local governments be allowed to accept part of the tax bills if a taxpayer doesn't have the funds available to pay the entire bill. Penalties then would be assessed on the unpaid arrears - not the total tax bill.
Feiner is also proposing that the town/county/fire district taxes not be collected in April - the same month that federal taxes are due. Some people cannot come up with all their taxes the same month of the year.


Anonymous said...

Nice idea. But please focus some energy on supervising the town, not the county.

Anonymous said...

county and local tax bills have to be paid. This suggestion will provide relief to taxpayers who are struggling.

Anonymous said...


It is certainly a good idea to allow payment on a quarterly or semi-annual basis, especially for those people with paid-off mortgages. I can just imagine having to come up with a 10k payment at one time. Ouch.

But don't you think this idea is months late. After all taxes are due in 25 days.

Anonymous said...

People with mortgages generally escrow and pay monthly.

People without pay school taxes twice a year, at different months.

So there is a spreading.

Another Feiner waste of time said...

Feiner proposes this idea every year around this time. No one takes him or the idea seriously anymore. The largest portion of the tax collected in unincorporated Greenburgh around this time of year is for the Town. If payments were deferred, the town would have to borrow money to run its operations. That would cost money. How much? You'd think Feiner knows, but he doesn't. He hasn't thought it through. The same is true for the county. It too depends on local tax collections to fund operations. Again, how much would allow deferral of payments cost? Feiner hasn't a clue. And while we're on the subject, how many people would benefit from such deferral? Most homeowners paying property taxes have their taxes paid for by the bank. Therefore, only a fraction must pay the tax themselves. And how many of these taxpayers are there? Again, Feiner doesn't have a clue. He could easily find out, but that would involve doing work to see if there's really a problem out there to be solve, rather than a press release to be issued. And while we're on the subject, one would think, given the difficult economic times, that the town would be happy difficulty collecting taxes. But here too, the town recently boasted that tax collection last year was better than ever, at nearly 100%. So, how much of a problem is there that needs solving here, how much would it cost to solve it, and how much would the rest of us taxpayers have to pay to foot the bill for Feiner's largesse?

Wouldn't it be nice to have a town supervisor who focused on addressing town problems, particularly when there are so many, and they keep getting worse? A town that has had a 31% percent increase in taxes in two years, with a warning that a merely 3% increase in spending next year will result in an 11% hike, with cuts in police, sanitation, snow removal and leaf pickup, and no cuts at all in programs for the economically disadvantaged, such as the $3000 per child xposure program taxpayers must pay for, without regard to anyone's financial need, plus the $200,000 gift to the Fairview Fire District last year, the $100,000 gift to that district for this year, and the $1.8 million that Feiner wants to give away to the Valhalla School District, and it's easy to see why the Town is in so much trouble. And, on top of that, we've had five comptrollers in five years, with the last one fired after telling the public that there's a lack of internal financial controls in several of the town departments.

With all of this going on, you'd think the Town Supervisor would focus on the real problems affecting the town instead of the ones he issues pointless unresearched repeat press releases about.


I have brought this up in the past. ...without success. However, the economic realities of 2009 (unemployment, stock market decline) highlight the need for the county to re-consider this proposal. It's probably too late for this year. But- I think this could happen in 2010.

Anonymous said...

As a TOV taxpayer, half of School tax due on Jan 31: Full County and Town tax due on April 30: School tax - second half due on Sept 30. Definitely a good idea if Town/County tax payment could be split so that second half of County/Town tax could be paid on Dec. 30. Gives more time to set aside money to pay in personal family budgets or more time to get a second job flipping at McDonalds for three months to pay these taxes.

All over Westchester we are drowning in School taxes (almong the highest in the nation) and then County taxes and Town taxes which include additionally fire distrtict, sewer improvement on and on.

I know I am not alone in thinking that sometimes it feels like we should just stop eating, exist on water and air only, so that we can pay property taxes.

I really wonder how long before the whole house of cards collapses. This cannot continue. And now it can be documented (see Zillow, Realtytrac or any Real Estate agency website, that with each tax increase the resale value of our property decreases.

Anonymous said...

You should have listened to Kolesars proposal of internal control before making a comment that taxes should be paid differently.

You cannot impliment a new system if you dont have a good foundation.
Kolesar had the knowledge of howie do it.But you had to fire him before he was heard.

I'm sure that you did read his report page by page which you will take the credit for making changes but you know what neither of you have the know how.

Anonymous said...

Before you make some more stupid comments how about cleanin up your own house.

You have too much dead wood working at town hall.

Haiku Paul said...

This suggestion will,
provide relief to taxpayers,
Who are struggling.

Anonymous said...

I think this is a good idea especially for senior citizens on fixed incomes.

Anonymous said...

Paul get a new assessor and lawyer that will follow the suggestions made by THE STATE COMPTROLLER.

Neither of the two will lift a finger to help us the taxpayers have lower taxes.
They are saying that what the comptroller or previous administration was wrong and what they did was illegal.

They do have the opportunity to lower taxes but the work will be extensive.
So could you tell me Paul who needs them.

Anonymous said...

Paul, what would be the costs of this proposal?

Bet you haven't a clue. (And don't use the current low interest rate as the norm, because once you start this, there's no going back.)

Anonymous said...

The relief that we need is from the school taxes.

Many of us have beeb paying school taxes for many years without having children in the school system.
I for one never had children who would benefit from the schools.
The taxes for schools is going out of style. We own the house that we live in but as far as the school many of us have and will not use itls services.

This is the area that should be looked at to reduce the taxes for seniors.
Mnay that have passed the budgets every year no longer live here and we are left holding the bag.

The scholl taxes should be lowered ..the star program is a little help but not that great and if it taken away the expenses will be greater.

Paul you should look into what can be done to lower taxes for the seniors by checking the school systems.
You keep saying that you have no power over them but the least you could do is try.

When we have to pay twenty thousand dollars in taxes just to live in a home that we owned for over fifty years is a crime.

Please help the senios.

Anonymous said...

The voters have the ultimate say with school taxes. They vote the school budgets up or down and elect school board members

Anonymous said...

9:55 au contraire mon frere!
Even when school budgets are voted down by the taxpayers, the school districts are entitled to enact contingency budgets which still allow them to increase taxes by close to 5% (GC has done this recently, and threatens to do it again). So, it would be more honest to say that stopping school increases requires new legislation in Albany (good luck to that).

Irate Hartsdale Homeowner said...

Of course, maybe if we had a majority on the Board who are homeowners in the GC district, we'd get more serious responses to the tax crisis than the cavalier response from the thinly-veiled anonymous poster at 9:55 a.m. I've never understood why voters tolerate non-TOV residents, or even non-GC residents, on the Board. Talk about "representation without taxation"!

Anonymous said...

The city of New york has been checking out overtime claimed by police and firemen.

This too has to stop here in Greenburgh.
By the civil servants putting in so much overtime especially toward the last years of work inflates there pension greatly.
That's the reason that they work the overtime but we have to pay higher taxes to meet the demand of higher pensions.

Anonymous said...

Interesting point. I've been looking at houses out of the north-east recently and, in some counties, even with decent school districts, the total property taxes are not much more than what I pay for the fire department in Greenburgh alone.

Anonymous said...

Fire and police taxes are going thru the roof ,. Why is it that no one checks this out.

If we all paid a decent amount of taxes for the school,fire department and police we could all live here without any problems but this will not happen because our town representatives are not looking after our well being.

Anonymous said...

It's about time that government checks out all overtime.

We cannot keep paying for the greed of some.
Disabilities within both the fire and police dept. should be investigated from time to time.

Many who claimed to be disabled are working at other jobs.

May I ask why is it that with all the manpower in both departments overtime is in order for the taking.

Anonymous said...

Stopping school tax increases might also require:
a.) reducing the number of children enrolled in the schools - which means reducing the number of children - period
b.) reducing the services offered to children with special needs
c.) reducing the services districts must provide in lieu of services expected of parents - stuff like filling the children's afterschool hours with safe, interesting and educational activities
Be careful what you wish for - some politician might take you at your word!

Anonymous said...

Hey Mr. Supervisor -
Why not calculate all the property taxes for a house for one year and divide it by 10 - then require payments of that amount in every month except April (to avoid conflicts with income taxes) and January (when the holiday bills arrive)?
You realize, of course, that people would know that they were paying more than $1,000 each month in taxes and would likely be really annoyed with you - don't you?

Anonymous said...

Not a problem - we could allow daily payments for those who are budetarily challenged.
Send the Receiver of Taxes a check for $30 every day and that $10,000+
tax bill is hardly noticeable.
Better still, just send along $1.50 every hour - if long-range planning and budgeting aren't your things.
Dumb is forever!