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Sempronius officials face scrutiny over property tax exemptions: $1M+ lacked essential documentation

  • / Updated:
  • Staff Report 

A recent audit, dated August 18 revealed lapses in the Town of Sempronius’s real property tax exemptions administration. 

Finger Lakes Partners (Billboard)

According to the findings, the Town Assessor failed to consistently ensure proper documentation for granting exemptions. Of the 278 exemptions examined, totaling $6.2 million, 55 percent of a $2.7 million subset lacked essential documentation to confirm eligibility and exemption calculations. 

These inaccuracies could introduce potential imbalances in the tax burden among local taxpayers.


Real property, land along with permanent structures on it, can be fully or partially exempt from taxes, depending on factors such as usage or state laws. 

The Assessor, appointed by the Town Board, bears the responsibility for evaluating property values and managing tax exemptions within Sempronius. Critical to the role is maintaining documentation that justifies granted exemptions, which directly influences the property tax bills generated from the assessment roll.

Responding to the audit’s conclusions, Town officials have acknowledged the oversight and expressed commitment to taking corrective measures. 

Recommendations from the audit include ensuring rigorous documentation checks before sanctioning exemptions and periodic reviews of the Real Property Tax System for accuracy. The audit covered the period from January 1, 2022, to May 5, 2023.