Town Board holds brief special board meeting

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On the afternoon of Aug. 2 the Amherst Town Board held a brief special board meeting to approve the implementation of the requested settlement by J.C. Penney Corporation, Inc.

The settlement requested was retribution for the corporation’s overpayment of taxes. The proceedings were commenced pursuant to Article 7 of the Real Property Tax Law by J.C. Penney Corporation, Inc., J.C. Penney Properties, Inc. and Penney Property Sub Holdings LLC challenged the assessment by the Town of Amherst for the corporation’s property at the Boulevard Mall, located at 3891 Maple Road, Amherst, for the years 2019 through 2021.

After review by the Amherst Town assessor as well as the town attorney, both agreed to and approved the contents of the stipulation and consent order required to implement the settlement.

The main contention was for the year 2021. The prior assessment for both 2019 and 2020 was set at $7,500,000 with no proposed revised assessment. The prior assessment for 2021 was set at $7,500,000 with a requested revised assessment of $2,806,813. The 2019 prior assessment at full value was $7,894,736 with a 95% equalization and no change in the revised assessment at full value. The 2020 prior assessment at full value was $8,241,758 with a 91% equalization and no change in the revised assessment at full value. The 2021 prior assessment at full value was $8,522,727 with an 88% equalization for a revised assessment of $3,189,560 at full value.

The agreement stipulates that if any tax bills based on the 2021 tax year are not reflected in a timely manner to reflect the revised tax year that J.C. Penney be paid the sum equal to the difference between the real property taxes paid or to be paid and the taxes that would have been paid if the tax bills had been corrected. Additionally, interest on the above payments shall be waived except that the interest be paid at the legal rate for real property tax assessment refunds to the extent amounts required to be paid hereunder are not paid within 60 days of the service of the order upon the entity responsible for making such payment, until the same is so paid.

At the meeting, which was adjourned within roughly a minute, the town board agreed the proposed settlement by J.C. Penney as well as the proposed terms were reasonable and unanimously approved the resolution thereby authorizing the town attorney and town assessor to execute the stipulation and consent order as well as any other required steps to implement the settlement.

Published by The Amherst Bee

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