Sunday, December 27, 2009

Keeping Seniors Living In Their Own Homes...

 
WHOSE JOB IS IT??

  • BOE schedules public hearing Jan. 12th to decide if Senior Tax Exemption Limits should be raised.
  • Cost to nonexempted residents could rise from $23/year to $37/year.
  • "The cost of living has gone up over the past 15 years. And the point is to try and keep seniors in their own homes." ~~ Bill Selke, Greece
STORY

SCATS ~~ Sorry Bill, but if I can't afford to pay my share of taxes to stay in my own home, I have no choice but to downsize. So should seniors, especially in this economy!

To the BOE ~~ If you raise MY TAXES to pay for people who can't afford to remain in their homes (which are typically ALL PAID FOR by the time they collect Social Security) there will be HELL TO PAY trying to pass your budget in May!

From Charlie Hubbard ~~ I was disappointed the article did not explain how this program is in 'addition' to the Enhanced (senior) STAR.

2 Very important points here.

#1 To Mr. Selkes point Enhanced STAR has been increased from a $50,000 assessment reduction to now over $60,000 reduction - that for whatever reason is missing. Regular STAR has stayed at $30,000while Senior STAR has increased. These facts are missing from Mr. Selkes comments.

#2 The article fails to mention that Greece 'looses' state aid as a result of this program.

The board and administration is well aware of these facts. For those who would like further info feel free to contact me.

chubbard005@rochester.rr.com
775-6015

28 comments:

Charlie Hubbard said...

I was disappointed the article did not explain how this program is in 'addition' to the Enhanced (senior) STAR.
2 Very important points here.

#1 To Mr. Selkes point Enhanced STAR has been increased from a $50,000 assessment reduction to now over $60,000 reduction - that for whatever reason is missing. Regular STAR has stayed at $30,000while Senior STAR has increased. These facts are missing from Mr. Selkes comments.

#2 The article fails to mention that Greece 'looses' state aid as a result of this program.

The board and administration is well aware of these facts. For those who would like further info feel free to contact me.

chubbard005@rochester.rr.com
775-6015

Anonymous said...

Bill Selke needs to go away. You are right on SCATS. My thoughts exactly! WHY am I LESS deserving to stay in my OWN home than someone who just happens to have hit the magical age of 65????? I should be forced to downsize or sell my home because I can't afford my taxes? My daughter should be forced out of HER home because SHE can't afford her taxes???? BUT all of us under 65 years old can SUBSIDIZE their taxes????? I don't think so! This is nothing but a gimmick to help pass school budgets. AND remember the "seniors" get to disguise their income by using IRA money which is not taken into account when income is tallied for the STAR program. Ask Charlie Hubbard. He is the one that exposed this mess.

Anonymous said...

There are some valid reasons for keeping older folks in their houses. Some would have nowhere to downsize. So these tax policies can provide benefits.

In this particular case however, it looks like another political scam by the Greece republicans to shore up one of their base constituents. It is not I think wise policy at this time. I think that working folks have taken on about as much of this burden as they currently can shoulder in this economic climate. There has to be a balancing the burdens here.

This is a tactical use of the school board as a political arm of the republican party.

When the district raises taxes it does not so easily reflect on the republican party run town board even though they currently have control over the school board.
Connect the dots here.

If we really want to keep people to continue living in Greece we need to start creating living wage jobs.

Anonymous said...

But don't you realize they don't care if they pass their budget? They get whatever they want with a failed budget. No more sports or supplies or transportation to be in jeopardy and we could all stay home on the vote day. It really doesn't matter.
A failed budget is only a lack of a status symbol and it gives Jody Siegel or a chance for a quote.

Anonymous said...

My personal feelings about the proposed additional help for senior citizens is much the same as my feelings about welfare, not that there would be a difference between the two anyway. It goes like this: Until you can tell me that a system has been put into place to stop people from beating the system, don’t take a single penny from me to put toward the plan! Nobody wants to see a senior citizen removed from their home. Likewise, nobody wants to see a child or family of lesser means go without essential human needs. However, when that family were paying for finds the extra funds to buy anything above and beyond those essentials (ie. Cable TV, cell phones, high end clothing, high end foods, higher end vehicles, ect.) it’s time for them to stand on their own, and remove their hand from my pocket! I remember the topic of seniors on this site a few months back, and it sounds as though the same type of thing was going on. I seem to recall instances where, although certain seniors showed a household income meeting requirements to qualify for this exemption, the household they were qualifying from was worth (in some cases) three or four times the value of my own. Simply put, they had found the loophole, by putting their “real money” into their family member’s accounts, they were able to show “broke”. Mr. Tydings, you and the rest of the likeminded need to fix this FIRST, then come to me with your hand out! Or, get off you’re a$$ and abolish the system and untold cost of open enrollment/school of choice (transportation) in this district and show the taxpayers your serious about getting things in order. Or, and I know this is a ridiculous concept… do both!

Anonymous said...

Bill Selke is the village "clown" when it comes to being able to comment fairly on any subject. He is the self-appointed expert on every subject and every situation. He lives to see his name and picture in print. But he always speaks just the republican mantra designed to keep the corrupt republicans in power. Without the senior citizens who have been "fooled and bought" for years and the conservative party manipulators, the republicans would be long gone.
Just another example of why living in Greece is becoming a cross we must bear rather than being an enjoyable place to live. Time to leave, asap. Grab the $6500 home sale tax credit and say goodbye to the sinister and sometimes downright evil people that control Greece, Selke included.

Anonymous said...

The part of that article where Selke suggests letting the rest of us foot the bill for increased senior exemptions is "only fair" is the biggest pile of manure I've seen in quite awhile! I wonder how "poor" Selke is himself to be the self appointed spokesperson? Oh, he's not!

SCATS said...

To Charlie Hubbard ~~ Thank you for the heads up! You are VERY knowledgable on this topic.

To 9:18AM ~~ Bill Selke won't go away until either the Republicans tell him to "shush it" or the Republicans get sent away themselves ;)

To 9:34AM ~~ Some of us non-seniors will have nowhere to go if we have to keep subsidizing other people's property taxes!

To 9:41AM ~~ You are right on!

To 11:18AM ~~ Good idea about the $6500 money grab. I especially think that seniors who can't afford Greece's taxes should put it to use and find a community where they CAN afford the property taxes.

To 12:50PM ~~ Now, now, don't be so hard on poor Bill! He doesn't realize how he's used by the corrupt & clubby company he keeps.

Anonymous said...

Seniors are somewhat more vulnerable than the rest of us may deserve some recognition of that.

The questions here however, is whether they already get sufficient aid relative to others. SCATS is certainly correct to point out that many working home owners are very vulnerable right now Foreclosures are way up and the economic outlook has not yet turned the corner. Working class folks need some protection too.

Just one point in regards to Charlie

Every system including the free enterprise one can be gamed and those who have a lot of money and status game that system all the time. just look at the the creation of derivatives that almost bankrupted us

Why pick on the poor for gaming when the real gaming done by the well off or by hospitals and doctors outstrips welfare misuse.

Anonymous said...

The district is full of over paid liars who just try to justify their over the top salaries,and the BOE are nothing more then a group of people wanting to look important.
None of them truly cares about the students or the taxpayers(young or old) just their titles and wallets.
Lets face it Greece politics is the school dist. and the BOE. It all stinks from the top down!

SCATS said...

To 4:34PM ~~ Re: "Seniors are somewhat more vulnerable than the rest of us may deserve some recognition of that."

Excuse me but you've ignored a plethora of potential economic issues, including the fact that many of the seniors getting this "help" are house rich, even if they are cash poor! If you live in a $250,000+ home, or have a cottage on the lake, you do NOT deserve "help" to keep you in digs that the rest of us can't afford. Also, just because someone is of a certain age does NOT make them "poor." I know some senior neighbors who get this "help" but still claim to be in dire straits. Guess what? They still get to Florida on schedule, rent a cottage on the Finger Lakes every Summer, eat out regularly and shop at Wegmans while scoffing at Price Chopper or Aldi's!

The problem is that the people who are getting these tax breaks may NOT be "poor" while many of the rest of us have lost jobs, taken pay cuts or been downsized into jobs with substantially lower pay and no or few benefits. Heck people like that don't even get the aid of medicare!

On top of those issues lies the problem with a school budget that has BALLOONED since last year and may require a significant tax rate INCREASE to maintain the status quo. That fails to address the other elephant in the living room - STATE AID. Uncle Dave is getting sued for withholding some. What will happen when it gets permanently REDUCED? We'll be asked to make up for that too! In fact, the school budget plus State Aid issue have us looking at an easy DOUBLE DIGIT TAX RATE INCREASE in 2010! And that's without adding a thing!! I submit to you that WE THE COMMON FOLKS CAN NOT AFFORD TO FOOT THIS BILL ANY LONGER.

SCATS said...

To 4:51PM ~~ Sad, isn't it? And the BOE laps up the lies without ever knowing what's hit them!

Anonymous said...

scats

Don't think I ignored anything.In most respects I agree with you
I am not in favor of further tax breaks for seniors at this time. I agree that the working folks have been asked to bear more than their fair share.

Still I know many seniors who do not go to Florida or have expensive homes. TO the contrary their pensions have been eaten up over the years or their spouse may have died and they get reduced income They are becoming more insecure.
Let's not paint every senior with the same brush.

All I'm trying to say is be careful about sweeping generalization about undeserving seniors or welfare recipients etc. I'm disturbed sometimes by what I see on the discussion as getting close to scapegoating

I am opposed to these breaks not because people don't deserve breaks but in the situation they go to far.

SCATS said...

To 5:38PM ~~ Is it possible that the people you know who are becoming less financially secure aren't even qualified for any break currently? I ask this because part of my argument suggests that younger folks who aren't recipients of any services or other help are likely in at least as difficult of a spot.

Anonymous said...

I think 9:41 summed this up perfectly. Until the powers that be can show me that not one single recipient of these breaks is living in a home nicer than mine, they can pound salt! Oh, and by the way, it's not just my home they need to compare their's to, it's the home of the lowest paid taxpayer these do-gooders want to rape. When none of these seniors is doing better than that guy, come talk to me.

Anonymous said...

5;38 you say be carefull about sweeping generalizations. Isn't that exactly what you are doing?

Anonymous said...

Welfare is welfare, you may not like that but this program is just that.
We complain about Albany giving out freebees to be paid for by others----WELL?? the difference here is ??????
Welfare comes in many forms but ALWAYS determined by "some" who think "they" know all.

Anonymous said...

Did the cost in the paper include the impact on STAR reimbersement? Do board members know or care?

If we really want to help people in need it should be "wealth" based not just "income" based.

If I have income from a $300,000bank account and live in an $100,000 house, but you own a $300,000 house, and have $50,000 in the bank, are you in more need of tax-payer help? Not in my book!

Your priorities are our business right up top the point that you want me to subsidise your life style!

Anonymous said...

10:12

AMEN!

Anonymous said...

I would like to get together a group of say 1000 people with a set of brass agates. A group of same minded people outside of Scottsdale AZ did and refused to pay any school tax increases. They said in their lawsuit that the school district in which they lived was fully funded to deliver the services that it was mandated to deliver. That they would pay the current school tax rate but not any increases. They won the district could not provide compelling evidence to justify the increases they were asking for.If we say no what are they gonna do take over a thousand properties in the town. Not a chance. This school board exists for one reason to keep GCSD out of the papers so the real estate "professionals" can sell houses here and the Chamber of Commerce can BS people about how great it is here. I would like to know how many people in the C of C actually live here.

SCATS said...

To 11:16PM ~~ I will join you. Let me know when you get the first 999 ... I'm just skeptical about the sheeple of Greece doing anything about our current situation. They don't vote. Don't complain to the powers that be. Don't speak at public meetings, hearings, etc. Refuse to talk to media. They fear repercussions so they continue to bend over and grab their ankles. Maybe, just maybe this year will be different.

Anonymous said...

Would it be fair to say that thanks to this type of welfare program Wegmans + Topps tax bill is higher making my food bill higher?
The 7;57 posting has it exactly right. WELFARE

SCATS said...

To 5:53PM ~~ Welfare but without any stigma. There are people actually speaking up publically to the BOE asking for more! I wonder if Selke gets this welfare, too.

By the way, some of you may not realize it BUT because of this program, there are several hundred homes in Greece that PAY NO PROPERTY TAX AT ALL. Nice, huh?

Anonymous said...

Wegmans gets COMIDA grants and tax breaks out the wazoo. The biggest recipients of "welfare" in the US are corporations.

PS it is neither a sin nor a stigma to be poor or to need assistance.

THere but for the grace of god . . .

SCATS said...

To 8:15PM ~~ I'd like to see some stats on how many additional properties will pay NO TAX. How many additional parcels will be taken onto the program and supported by the rest of us. If you are begging the BOE for a bigger PROPERTY TAX break on your $150,000+ home in Greece, it's quite likely you aren't truly a welfare case ... just a free-loader taking advantage of the sheeple.

Anonymous said...

The school board should eliminate this entire option in Greece. I believe it's allowed under the law. It's time for some heavy duty belt tightening. Let's start with stabilizing (if not reducing) administrative salaries and benefits. It's not as if they are giving us any kind of payback shown with results by students.

Anonymous said...

Is lynching still illegal?

SCATS said...

To 1:27PM ~~ Usually, yes, if you mean that literally. However, if there is some sort of potential political payoff and you just want to parade someone around in handcuffs in front of TV cameras for diversion tactics, it's A-OK.