Keene Central board approves tax relief for emergency workers

Keene Central School (Enterprise photo — Antonio Olivero)

KEENE VALLEY — The Keene Central School District Board of Education passed a resolution Tuesday that grants qualifying volunteer firefighters and ambulance workers school tax relief.

Under the exemption, a qualifying volunteer firefighter or ambulance worker would receive an exemption from being taxed on up to 10% of the assessed value of their property. Their service must be voluntary; paid firefighters and ambulance workers are not eligible for the tax relief. A volunteer first responder must also have their primary residence at the property in question and at least two years’ service.

KCSD has two volunteer fire departments in its district, the Keene Volunteer Fire Department and Keene Valley Hose and Ladder.

Taxpayers would still need to fund the school district’s budget — the amount of taxes the district collects to fund its budget would not change with the exemption, meaning that taxpayers who are not volunteer first responders would need to pay slightly more in taxes.

The village of Lake Placid and towns of North Elba, Wilmington and Keene all passed the same exemption last year. Lake Placid Central School District passed a similar exemption this past September, as well as a three-tiered exemption for veterans, combat veterans and service-disabled veterans. KCSD does not currently offer the exemption for veterans.


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