Assessor Shuffle is Complete

By Jann Wiswall

Last week, the Town of Ellicottville appointed Harry Weissman to a six-year term as the town’s new assessor. Weissman’s term begins October 1, 2013.

This comes as most municipalities across the state appoint assessors to new terms in the same year.

For the past five years, Ellicottville and the Town of Allegany have been in a state-sponsored CAP agreement.

CAP is a state program that partners two or more towns in a county that share the same assessor, assessment equalization rate and assessment cycle. The term of the agreement is 10 years. Its intent is to ensure that towns with similar assessment profiles use the same standards of assessment. The state pays towns in such agreements $7 per taxable parcel in a lump sum.  If the towns part ways on the agreement, each town must repay a prorated share of the lump sum to the state.

Last week, Allegany appointed Bobbi Elderkin as its new town assessor. Since Ellicottville and Allegany no longer share the same assessor, their CAP agreement is void. Therefore, Ellicottville will repay approximately $10,000 to the state — its prorated share.

According to Allegany Town Supervisor John Hare, Allegany either will repay about $11,000 or look into entering a new CAP agreement with another town that shares Elderkin as assessor and meets the other criteria required by the state. Hare said discussions with other towns have not yet begun.

In July, the Town of Mansfield reappointed its assessor, Robin Pearl, to another six-year term. Pearl, who until October also serves as Ellicottville’s and Allegany’s assessor, was not reappointed to those positions. Mansfield will not look for a town to CAP with, said Town Supervisor Bob Keis.