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Hopatcong Expected to OK $300K for Revaluations

Payments to be spread out over five years, borough official says.

Hopatcong has started toward a borough property re-evaluation.

The council is expected to approve $300,000 to fund the re-evaluation, which wouldn't count against the 2012 budget, Borough Administrator Robert Elia said. In fact, Elia said, the money would be spread out over payments of $60,000 a year starting 2013.

Elia said Hopatcong hasn't hired a company to perform the re-evaluations yet. During the 2008 re-evaluation the borough employed Certified Valuations Inc., Elia said.

Tax Assessor Therese DePierro said 368 property tax appeals had been filed in Hopatcong as of April 1.

The re-evaluation "should reduce the number of appeals," DePierro said.

Earlier in June, Councilman Michael Francis .

"It's time to let our people know that we recognize the fact we're a little bit off kilter with some of that stuff and I think people would be more acceptable of our financial problems if we were taxing them at the real value of our homes," he said.

Michele Guttenberger November 21, 2012 at 08:57 PM
DD6479 isn't it nice to know things are getting back to normal. Now you have something in common with Hudson Farms. You both have properties the Tax assessor hasn't and won't be stepping a foot on. However, the only difference is you will still be paying into the new adjusted tax rate but they won't be paying any new tax rate for the helipad, the estate house with the stocked ratskeller nor the 600+ acres of preserve land in Hopatcong. But most of all it is $300K our town is spending in order to raise taxes on you - the little guy. Least this $300k should be wasted to improve our communication systems like live streaming Internet video of town meetings or an online electronic billing system to pay for things like our taxes, bulk garbage permits and water bills. But instead $300K is being spent to hire someone we are telling to go away. However, our Mayor is a woman of faith and believes in miracles. Yes, little Sylvia there is a real estate tax gold mine up in those residential hills of Hopatcong and the tax assessor shall shine his light upon them and lead the way to this bounty. And you shall continue to receive paving stones, water fountains, statues, deluxe lit flagpoles and meeting trips to Atlantic City until your final days of office. Amen.
jazzman November 21, 2012 at 10:41 PM
whats your thoughts on the rumor that the property in the area of 200 block Maxium drive,lake front,has claimed church or religious status and doesnt have to pay property tax at all..if true thats a 30 thousand dollar tax payer loss by my estimate from the enormass size of that house/now a structure!
The Watcher November 22, 2012 at 06:32 AM
So Michele you're saying the mayor pays almost all of her taxes in Morris and NOT in Sussex county, and she only keeps one property here under her name so she can be mayor?
Michele Guttenberger November 22, 2012 at 06:48 AM
Jazzman - Municipal Land Use Law ( N.J.S.A 40:55D-44) ...."any parcel listed in its approved OSRP The block grant enables a municipality to react quickly when a market opportunity arises, instead of waiting to see if an individual grant will be approved for a given parcel". So if the OSRP is approved and the property you mentioned is on the list it could very well be a property purchased as Open Space Recreation Property without a referendum, vote or approval by the tax payer. Once it is purchased as open space or recreation property it is non taxable land. They say that these properties need to be approved by the state in advance. But how strict is the state in reviewing or investigating a property on the list to see if it meets the criteria. Do they do a thorough audit? You and I will never know this info. However, you could look to see if this property is listed on the OSRP inventory list. Here is the link that lists the properties. It is at the back of this report http://www.hopatcong.org/Minutes/OSRPUpdate.pdf This may not tell you if the property has been turned over but you will know it it has been listed for purchase on the OSRP. Again there is no public approval for the Mayor to change the status of this land from taxed to nontaxable land with a OSRP purchase.
The Watcher November 22, 2012 at 03:38 PM
So we pay and they play? The list is a whose who. BTW Michele you didn't answer the post " So Michele you're saying the mayor pays almost all of her taxes in Morris and NOT in Sussex county, and she only keeps one property here under her name so she can be mayor?"

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