AAUW hosts tax forum in Skaneateles

Did you know the largest portion of your taxes goes for education? Or that one-half of the sales tax we pay goes to New York state and the other half to the county? Those are just two of the many tax facts presented by attorney Teresa Roney at the tax forum last Wednesday night in Skaneateles. The American Association of University Women invited her to speak to the public on local taxes and assessments and she exceeded expectations.

Up to 30 people trooped to the library lecture room upstairs for what could have been a great tranquilizer but ended up being a stimulant. Roney, attorney for the zoning board of appeals, made the subject comprehensible and clear in a power point presentation, breaking the taxes into categories, leading the gathering through the process from A to Z, detailing where your tax dollars come from how they are spent.

The audience asked pointed questions, which she either answered or fielded to other individuals in attendance.

Dan Stanford, assessor, and members of the Taxation and Assessment Review Committee were called upon during the in-depth question-and-answer forum, including Ellen Kulik, David Graham and Paul Alciati.

The group was formed after the last assessment and is made up of local residents, appointed by the town supervisor, Phil Tierney.

Everyone was delighted to learn from Roney that the community center is pulling ever closer to being self sufficient and now only 18 cents per $1,000 of your taxes are going to support it. The other portion of the 34.5 percent for recreation goes to maintain the many parks and fields, including the necessary full- and part-time employees, such as lifeguards at the lakefront, summer employees for children's programs, etc. It is easy to forget the wonderful facilities that help make Skaneateles the great place it is to live, from the basketball court, to the playing fields, and Austin Park Pavilion, to the new Guppy Nature Trail off old Seneca Turnpike, just to name a few.

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