CHEEKTOWAGA, NY (WKBW) — A packed house and high emotions at Cheektowaga Town Hall.
"This is not what we voted for, this is not what we expect, and it is not what I’m going to accept," a Cheektowaga resident said during public comment.
The town board held a special meeting to talk about property reassessments that have outraged many people in town.
Within the first few minutes of the meeting, town lawyer Maura Seibold said it is not possible to suspend the assessments mailed on May 1.
Challenging your assessment in Cheektowaga:
- You must challenge your assessment at Town Hall.
- You must submit your paperwork by May 25.
- Click here for the step by step process.
- Call or email the town assessor's office with questions: (716) 686-3440, firstname.lastname@example.org
Some people said their property value went up by as much as forty thousand dollars, for others, even more
Homeowners said on top of inflation, gas prices and the looming effects of the pandemic, they are not prepared to pay more for their house.
"We're getting taxed and taxed and taxed, we can't even get baby formula, we can't get nothing,” a town resident said. “We're hurting."
Town Assessor Jill Murphy was present at the meeting via zoom, she said an increase in property value does not necessarily mean an increase in taxes.
Town Supervisor Diane Benczkowski said she will protect taxpayers when they look at the budget in September.
"I will make sure there is no tax levy increase,” Benczkowski said. “Meaning what goes to the taxpayers to pick up the cost."
She said there is no reason assessments should be annual.
"We're going meet for next year to make sure we don't go through this again,” Benczkowski said. "They deserve better."
But some neighbors said they're not satisfied with the meeting, or the assessment process.
"There was no standard articulated,” one Cheektowaga homeowner said. “Just kind of a finger in the air and a guess."