Town of Owasco – Real Property Tax Exemptions Administration (2020M-102)

Issued Date
January 29, 2021

[read complete report - pdf]

Audit Objective

Determine whether the Town of Owasco (Town) Town Assessor (Assessor) properly administered select real property tax exemptions.

Key Finding

The Assessor did not properly administer select real property tax exemptions.

  • Granted property exemptions were not always properly applied for or supported.
    • 99 property tax exemptions were reviewed; 75 of the exemptions totaling over $4.1 million were not properly applied for or supported.
      • Property owners received $4,014 in 2019 Town tax reductions for these unsupported exemptions.

Key Recommendation

  • The Assessor should ensure applicants provide supporting documentation before granting exemptions, retain documentation to support eligibility and periodically verify that those granted exemptions qualify.

Town officials generally agreed with our recommendations and indicated they planned to initiate corrective action.