Cheektowaga residents outraged over property assessment

“I’m furious. It's sad. It's disappointing"
Posted at 4:10 PM, May 10, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-10 18:51:26-04

BUFFALO, NY (WKBW) — Cheektowaga homeowners are crying foul over another round of reassessments on their homes for the second year in a row.

Reassessment notices are arriving at many homes this week, ranging from ten to 30-percent increases.

“I’m furious. It's sad. It's disappointing,” declared Sarah Bowback, Cheektowaga resident.

Residents tell 7 News they had no warning that their home values would be reassessed.

Sarah Bowback, Cheektowaga resident.

Bowback just moved into her home on Cresthaven Drive two months ago. But Monday when she opened her mail she received this letter from the town assessor saying her assessed value is spiking by $21,000.

“We just bought our house and you know we paid $130,000 it was assessed at $140,000 and now our assessment is $160,000. it's crazy,” Bowback explained.

“It sounds like you've all been blindsided by this?” Buckley asked. “Yeah, I feel that way — I had no idea. I just purchased my house — I wasn't expecting this,” replied Bowback.

“That hurts when we're looking at $4 gas prices, nine-percent inflation,” remarked Wally Carriero, resident.

Wally Carriero, resident.

Carriero has lived on Dick Road for more than 30 years. He also received a reassessment on his home of more than ten percent.

“I think the assessor should be really taking a hard look and thinking about what they're doing to their community because they're certainly not making the residents of Cheektowaga happy,” Carriero noted.

“I feel horrible for these residents that they are dealing with this right now, responded Diane Benczkowski, supervisor, Town of Cheektowaga.

I talked with Cheektowaga Supervisor Benczkowski Tuesday over the phone. She tells me she is outraged and had no idea reassessments were mailed out.

“I will be honest with you Eileen, I was also outraged. I was in total shock on Friday when I started receiving these phone calls from residents,” Benczkowski said.

The supervisor says she received her reassessment Monday, catching her by surprise, and boosting her property by $30,000.

Homes in Cheektowaga.

The assessments allow a town to make sure property values are at market value.

“Here we are May 10th, there has been no discussion of what the numbers were and what direction we are going in,” explained Benczkowski.

The supervisor says the town should not be issuing another reassessment and that the state now provides a cyclical reassessment allowing it for over a four-year period.

“This is totally a waste of money — taxpayer money — this shouldn't have been done again,” Benczkowski described.