Medina village asked to approve tax exemption for Cold War vets

Photos by Tom Rivers: Medina resident David Barhite asks the Village Board to consider a tax exemption for Cold War veterans, which would be worth up to $75 for 20 eligible veterans in the village.

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 22 April 2019 at 9:45 pm

Earl Schmidt, director of the Orleans County Veterans Service Agency, said the exemption would increase the tax rate by 1 cent for the other taxpayers in the village. He said Medina is the only village in the county that doesn’t currently have the exemption in place.

MEDINA – The Village Board was asked to approve a tax exemption for Cold War veterans that would save the 20 eligible veterans up to about $75 in their village taxes annually.

The exemption is for up to 10 percent off the taxes or $4,000 off the assessed value of a property.

The village has a tax rate of $18.32 per $1,000 of assessed property for 2019-20, according to a budget approved this evening. If the exemption were in place, eligible veterans would get $73.28 off their taxes if the taxable value was reduced by $4,000.

Earl Schmidt, director of the Veterans Service Agency in Orleans County, asked for the minimum exemption, which is the $4,000 off in taxable value. That is the level that the County Legislature approved in December 2017 for eligible veterans with their county taxes.

Schmidt said the exemption would include 12 veterans in Ridgeway’s portion of the village, and eight in the part of the village in Shelby.

If approved, he said the exemption would cause the other taxpayers to see a 1 cent increase in their tax rate.

“For a penny, I believe that it is worth saying thank you to our veterans,” he said.

Schmidt also said Medina is the only village in the county that doesn’t have the exemption in place. The Albion Village Board last year approved the Cold War exemption at a maximum of $6,000 off the assessment.

Schmidt was joined by the Medina meeting by several local veterans. David Barhite, a former village trustee, asked the board to consider the tax discount for the Cold War veterans.

“We’re talking about a penny to say thank you to the veterans for what they went through to give us our freedoms,” he said.

It’s too late for the exemption to be in place for the 2019-20 village budget. The Village Board said they would discuss whether to offer it in the future.

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