Assessor discusses inaugural year of intermuncipal program
July 1 marked the close of assessment rolls statewide. This year, it also marked the first-year completion of the Coordinated Assessment Program (CAP), a consolidation effort between the towns of Van Buren and Lysander who share the services of Assessor Theresa Golden.
Thus far, the program has proven successful.
"We are very pleased with how this program is working," said Lysander Supervisor Barry Bullis.
Van Buren Supervisor Claude Sykes said the CAP is working well due to Golden's self-starter personality. He added there is adequate office coverage, work is completed in a timely manner and Golden provides monthly updates to the board.
"No one wishes for their assessments to increase, therefore, the assessor's position is one where you will never be correct in 100 percent of the people's eyes," Sykes said. "Theresa has done an excellent job as assessor under the CAP program, with less than ideal circumstances."
Golden initially began providing assessment services to both Lysander and Van Buren in January 2008 when the towns entered into a trial-basis Shared Assessment Agreement. When the arrangement proved successful, the towns entered into the CAP, which provides more incentives to municipalities from the New York State Office of Real Property Services.
With 9,300 parcels in Lysander and 5,703 parcels in Van Buren, the Messenger recently caught up with Golden despite her busy schedule to learn details about her first full year working for both towns.
What was the biggest challenge when you originally accepted the position as assessor for both towns?
The biggest challenge was having enough time to complete the first annual assessment review. I usually start in September or October -- I didn't start in Lysander until January and that was hard. We wanted ample time for notifications and informal meetings.
What impact has the national trend of falling property prices had in Lysander and Van Buren, if any?