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Oct 3, 2012 12:18 PMPublication: The Southampton Press

Westhampton Beach School Board Adopts 2012-13 Tax Levy

Oct 4, 2012 2:04 PM

The Westhampton Beach Board of Education finalized the district’s tax levy for the 2012-13 school year on Monday night after a nearly 3-percent drop in property assessments caused the tax rate to go up more than double what was originally projected prior to May’s vote on the $51.8 million budget.

Schools Superintendent Michael Radday said that while the $26.3 million tax levy approved in May will remain the same, the assessed valuation of land in the district dropped by 2.95 percent, from $4,627,477,581 last year to $4,490,772,583 this year. As a result, the tax rate is now expected to increase by 33 cents, from $5.53 per $1,000 to $5.86, a nearly 6-percent increase. In May, district officials projected that the tax rate would only go up by 16 cents, to $5.69, or about 2.9 percent.

But Mr. Radday stressed that, due to a drop in assessments throughout the district, most taxpayers will not see their school property tax bills increase by 6 percent. He said school officials believe the average district assessment is now $600,000. A taxpayer whose home is assessed at $600,000 will pay about $3,516 in taxes this year, or $198 more than last year.

On Monday night, board members originally tabled the resolution to finalize the tax rate, explaining that they wanted to discuss the formula. Mr. Radday said the board unanimously approved the rate after exiting executive session.

“The item was tabled so that additional clarification could be provided to the board regarding calculations,” Mr. Radday wrote in an email on Tuesday morning.

The board also recognized seven high school seniors who were honored by the National Merit Scholarship Corporation for receiving exceptional scores on their PSAT exams last year and being named semifinalists in the National Merit Scholarship competition.

Westhampton Beach High School had three students—Nicasia Beebe-Wang, 16, Yifeng Fu, 17, and Marielle Ray, 17—recognized for scoring exceptionally high on their PSAT exams. And the following four high school students were named National Merit Scholarship semifinalists: Nisarg Dabhi, 17, Samuel Kapust, 17, Francesco Logozzo, 18, and Nicholas Panzarino, 17.

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