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$6 Million Tax Break Hidden in the Sweden Town Budget

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A careful reading of the 2013 Sweden Town Budget discloses that last year the town granted $6,417,530 worth of tax exemptions under the simple heading “Business Exemption.”

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The information about this six and a half million dollar tax break is buried on the last page of the 65 page budget, eight lines up from the bottom of the page.

Code.....47610/47611
Description.....Business Exemption
Number of Parcels.....7
Exemption Amount.....$6,417,530

But the Sweden Town Budget does not explain:

  • What the 47610/47611 exemptions are,
  • Who got them,
  • Or why were they granted.

Even if you wade through the entire 1,291 pages of the 2013 Final Assessment Roll for the Town of Sweden, you still can only find the answer to one of those three questions.

You can find out which properties got the lucrative tax exemptions, but you can’t find a definition of the exemptions or why the tax breaks were awarded.

Sweden not only makes it difficult to contact the Town Council, they make it difficult to find out how and why they are spending the tax payer’s hard earned money.

There is only one 47611 tax exemption; Wal-Mart, and it’s buried on page 740 of the 1,291 page report.

That 47611 tax exemption means Wal-Mart gets a $13,371.08 tax break every year from the Town of Sweden.

These six properties get the 47610 tax exemption from the Town of Sweden: a car wash, a frozen custard stand, a fast food joint, a gas station, and a home improvement store.

  1. Lowe’s- Large retail
  2. Tim Horton's – Fast food
  3. Classy Chassy Car Wash – a car wash
  4. Abbott’s – Frozen custard/snack bar
  5. Sodoma MK - Gas station

Those five tax exemptions cost the taxpayers in the town of Sweden $10,827.41 every year.

Add that to the $13,371.08 tax exemption that Wal-Mart gets every year and the 47611/47611 tax exemptions cost Sweden tax payers $23,405.61 in lost revenue every year.

So why is the Town Council dragging its feet on the 421m tax exemption for 60 Clinton Street in Brockport?

The Full Market Value of the Lowe's property at 300 Owens Road is $9,576,000.00. But because of the 47610 tax exemption, the Town Taxable Value is only $7,476,000.00. That’s a difference of $2,100,000.00.

At the $4.46 per thousand tax rate, the town tax would be $42,708.96. But because of the tax exemptions the town tax is only $33,342.96, so the town loses $9,366.00 in tax revenue every year because of the tax exemption.

The Full Market Value of the Tim Horton's property at 6573 Fourth Section Road is $573,000.00. But because of the 47610 tax exemption, the Town Taxable Value is only $552,000.00. That’s a difference of $21,000.00.

At the $4.46 per thousand tax rate, the tax would be $2,555.58. But because of the tax exemptions the Town tax is only $2,461.92, so the town loses $93.66 in tax revenue because of the tax exemption.

The Full Market Value of the Abbott's Frozen Custard property at 4599 Lake Road is $183,900.00. But because of the 47610 tax exemption, the Town Taxable Value is only $175,140.00. That’s a difference of $8,760.00

At the $4.46 per thousand tax rate, the tax would be $820.19. But because of the tax exemptions the Town tax is only $781.12, so the town loses $39.07 in tax revenue because of the tax exemption.

The Full Market Value of the Classy Chassy Car Wash property at 4653 Lake Road is $351,000. But because of the 47610 tax exemption, the Town Taxable Value is only $291,900. That’s a difference of $59,100.00.
At the $4.46 per thousand tax rate, the tax would be $1,565.46. But because of the tax exemptions the Town tax is only $1,301.87, so the town loses $263.59 in tax revenue because of the tax exemption.

The Full Market Value of the Lakeside Quality Building property at 5954 Brockport Spencerport Road is $523,500.00. But because of the 47610 tax exemption, the Town Taxable Value is only $462,465.00. That’s a difference of $61,035.00.

At the $4.46 per thousand tax rate, the tax would be $2,334.81. But because of the tax exemptions the Town tax is only $2,062.59 so the town loses $272.22 in tax revenue because of the tax exemption.

The Full Market Value of the Sodoma MK property at 5550 Brockport Spencerport Road is $801,300.00. But because of the 47610 tax exemption, the Town Taxable Value is only $623,525.00. That’s a difference of $177,775.00.

At the $4.46 per thousand tax rate, the tax would be $3,573.80. But because of the tax exemptions the Town tax is only $2,780.92 so the town loses $792.88 in tax revenue because of the tax exemption.

There are certainly valid reasons why those tax exemptions were granted. Tax exemptions generate jobs almost immediately and in the long run they generate a lot of tax revenue for the town.

It is noteworthy that none of those tax exemptions were granted to a business in the Village of Brockport.

So the question is; why is the Sweden Town Council hesitant to grant the 421m exemption for the property at 60 Clinton Street?

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