Rotterdam approves extended tax break for volunteer firefighters, ambulance workers

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ROTTERDAM — Volunteer firefighters and ambulance workers who live in town and have at least two years of service are now eligible for an extended tax break.

The Town Board this past week unanimously approved a local law granting eligible volunteer firefighters and ambulance workers the ability to apply for a 10% discount on their home property tax bill.

Those that qualify can begin applying for the tax break beginning in 2024, since the deadline to apply for the discount this year has passed.

Rotterdam, which is home to eight volunteer fire districts, has for years offered volunteer emergency workers with at least five years of service a 10% break on their tax bill, but only on $3,000 of their assessed property value.

The extended discount, which removed the $3,000 cap, comes after Gov. Kathy Hochul last year approved legislation allowing municipalities to offer the greater tax break. The law requires local governments already offering emergency workers a tax break three years to conform to the new standard.

Municipalities throughout the region have started the process of adopting legislation extending the 10% tax break to volunteer works, including Clifton Park and Schenectady County, which is expected to approve legislation on the matter at its next meeting.

Volunteer emergency workers eligible for the tax break must apply for the discount annually, but the tax break becomes permanent for those with at least 20 years of service. Spouses of a volunteer emergency work who died in the line of duty, and who has not re-married, also are eligible to receive the tax break, so long as they do not relocate.

Contact reporter Chad Arnold at: [email protected] or by calling 518-395-3120.

Categories: News, News, Rotterdam, Schenectady County

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