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March 17, 2014 - 2:54pm

Results of County's tax lien auction

posted by Howard B. Owens in genesee county, tax liens.

Below are the results of the auction Saturday at Bontrager's of properties seized by Genesee County for non-payment of property taxes. Treasurer Scott German said the amount of taxes owed has been calculated not to include accrued interest, but the figure is still preliminary. The list of city properties sold is not yet available.

Address Type Acres Assessed Taxes Sale Price
6550 Alleghany Road, Alabama Single Fam. .48 $73,300 $14,773 $30,000
2725 Attica Road, Alexander Single Fam. .48 $72,800 $10,721 $23,000
3366 Dodgeson Road, Alexander Single Fam. 1.3 $69,000 $17,611 $44,000
3457 West Main Street Road, Batavia Single Fam. 3.8 $90,600 $11,643 $70,000
East Main Street Road, Batavia Vacant .4545 $100 0 $300
7573 South Lake Road, Bergen Single Fam. .4386 $70,000 $11,799 $51,000
5785 E. Bethany-Le Roy Rd, Bethany Single Fam. .5 $111,600 $15,136 $47,000
10474 Bethany Center Road, Bethany Single Fam. .28 $75,700 $12,661 $64,000
County Line Road Vacant Lot 4.5 $20,300 $3,320 $12,500
6920 Transit Road, Elba Vacant Lot 2.08 $4,400 $1,400 $8,000
6616 Snyder Road, Elba Single Fam. 1.11 $15,000 $5,799 $9,000
4973 Barrville Road, Elba Single Fam. .4 $29,000 $3,390 $18,000
East Main Road, Le Roy Vacant Lot .54 $800 $1,036 $300
Meiser Road, Pembroke Vacant Lot .45 $20,000 $3,284 $4,000
Sliker Road, Pembroke Vacant Lot 1 $34,000 $4,977 $10,000
866 Gabbey Road, Pembroke Single Fam. .41 $55,200 $5,867 $15,000
Angling Road, Pembroke Vacant Lot 1 $15,000 $2,517 $3,100
5762 Route 5, Stafford Restaurant 4.36 $284,000 $42,263 $70,000
3321 Church St., Alexander 3 Fam. .99 $124,800 $20,769 $48,000
West Main Street, Le Roy Vacant Lot 44.4 $50,000 $938 $42,500
106 Lake St., Le Roy 2 Fam. .53 $87,200 $25,604 $35,000
86 Wolcott St., Le Roy Single Fam. .24 $39,000 $6,576 $18,000
21 Lathrop, Le Roy Single Fam. .1894 $68,200 $11,109 $41,000
12 Maple Ave., Oakfield Vacant Lot .2055 $15,300 $21,552 $1,800

 

Mark Potwora
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Looking at the above figures..None of the properties went for what their assessed value was..Does that mean that some of these properties where over assessed meaning that those owners have been being over charged property taxes for years..

3321 Church St., Alexander 3 Fam. .99 $124,800 $549 $42,500..This one makes no sense at all..They only owed 549 dollars on a 124,000 piece of property and the government takes it..And it only sold for 1/3 of it assessed value..Taking any property for back taxes and making a profit should be wrong.Any extra money over what is owed should go back to the homeowner..The county made 42,000 dollars on this....Wrong in so many ways..

Scott German
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Mark:

For 3321 Church St. Alexander, you are correct. Howard made a couple errors on the amounts listed above. The correct amounts for 3321 Church St are as follows:
It is assessed for $124,800. It sold for $48,000. Back taxes were $20,769.

I have asked Howard to make the corrections for other errors above.

cj sruger
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One thing is for sure is that they are all over assesed. I mean whats a more true test to what a property is worth than how much someone actually paid for it, especiallly an entire group of propertys that sold all at once, all are 30-60% over assesed. Funny how the Treasurer jumped on a reply to the 1st comment as if he was watching closly wondering how this obviouse over assesment will go over.
The party house in stafford sold for less than half of its assesment, 172$K less than assesment. why dont they just raise the tax rates 50% rather than asses our property 50% more than its worth?

Daniel Neal
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None of the properties are overassessed , the reason they sold for much less than the assessment is that the goal of most people that go to a tax auction is to pick up a house for cheap , the county's only concern is that they get what is owed in taxes , the people bidding wish to pay as little as possible. I was there to bid on the property at 3457 West Main , but it went for more than I wanted to spend. That property was a fiasco anyway , the people that owned it bid on it and ultimately bought it , well , the wife's father bought it for them so now they get to get away with not paying their taxes for 3 years and can file for bankruptcy and get their mortgage wiped clean , must be nice to cheat the system

terry paine
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I love that the Town of Oakfield thinks they provided $21000 worth of services to the owner of a $15000 vacant lot. Remember this property requires zero fire protection,zero police protection or sends zero children to the local schools.

Nothing but taxpayer funded criminals.

John Roach
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Dan, don't confuse people with facts. How many people who go to an auction plan to bid more than the item is worth? They may in fact pay too much, but that is not what they plan to do.

Mark Potwora
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Thanks for the correction Scott..Point still stands ..The county made 28,000 dollars on that piece of property ..That profit should go back to the person who owed the tax..The county should only get what taxes are owed and give back the rest..Seems like this property was way over assessed...Wrong Wrong Wrong..

Mark Potwora
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5762 Route 5, Stafford Restaurant 4.36 $284,000 $42,263 $70,000....A quarter of a million dollar property only sells for 70,000.That is way over assessed....The county makes 30,000 dollars that is wrong..Someone should be looking into the assessor of this area..

tom hunt
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Mark, unfortunately that is how business assessments go; the revenue generating factor is figured into the real estate assessment. I know, it should not be ....but it is reality.

Mark Potwora
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Tom i guess they didn't get a GCEDC handout...

John Roach
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Amazing people do not understand the idea behind an auction.

Jeremy Yasses
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Terry,
As current Mayor of the Village of Oakfield, I would ask that you do your research before commenting on situations. That vacant lot, once had a house on it that had a fire. It was structurally unsound and had to be demolished for the safety of public. The current homeowners did not have insurance and therefore it was then a burden of the taxpayers and that is why it was added to the tax roll. All water and other expenses unpaid get relieved on the taxes. The property was then properly assessed to its correct value once vacant. If the property would of remained assessed at its current value, then maybe you could call us "taxpayer funded criminals".

terry paine
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It wasn't necessary to research it because I already assumed that was probably the case.

Nice try in justifying stealing a persons property when they've had a tragic loss.

My heart goes out to all these individuals.

Mark Potwora
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To add to Terry's comment there are other vacant lots ...Sliker Road, Pembroke Vacant Lot 1 $34,000 $4,977 $10,000...Assess at 34,000 ..1 acre of land ..no way did pembroke provide 4,977 dollars worth of service to this lot...and then it only brought 10,000 dollar selling price....Over assessed ..the property owner was being robbed in my book...

Jeremy Yasses
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Terry
The property wasn't "stolen". The owners did not pay for the property therefore they lost it. Just like not paying for a car or a mortgage or any other such responsibility you might of signed up for.

Ricky G. Hale
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I vote for Mark Potwora for the new assessor for all my properties. I'm tired of paying taxes and getting crap in return for my dollar.

Dave Olsen
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Wait a minute Mr. Yasses: "The owners did not pay for the property therefore they lost it."? So in other words, the village or town the property is located in owns the property and we have to pay to keep it? Wow, That is a very skewed attitude and shows how we, the people have become slaves to government.

Mark Potwora
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You are so wrong Mr.Yasses..The owners did pay for the property ..It was the taxes they didn't pay..Are you telling all of us that in Oakfield the town owns all the property...You did say,,,,,,The property wasn't "stolen". The owners did not pay for the property therefore they lost it......

Howard B. Owens
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So let me get this straight -- people should be able to say, "I'm not going to pay my property taxes" -- for whatever reason (I got sick, I lost my job, I forgot, or I just don't want to pay them), and that's it? No consequences? Why would anybody then pay their taxes?

Oh, I guess we could fine them, but then if they're not paying their taxes, why would they pay the fines?

Or, perhaps, you would prefer we throw them in jail?

Exactly what should happen to people who don't pay their taxes? (setting aside any argument about the justness of the taxes in the first place). The taxes are levied, most people pay them, so why should some people get to say, screw it, I'm not paying my taxes? We should just be able to pick and choose what taxes we want to pay and when and how much?

Also, I can't imagine ANYONE going to a tax lien auction expecting to pay anything close to market value, unless it's an exceptional property. The idea is to get BARGAINS. The buyers are usually speculators looking for deals so they can profit from the property. You don't pay market prices for items you want to turn a profit on. Ever watch American Pickers?

Not only that, this is hardly a free market auction. The market is constrained by the pool of eligible buyers. You've got to have cash in hand to purchase the properties. That cuts out all of the potential buyers who would need to secure financing (or who haven't already secured financing).

So to say the auction results somehow reflect on actual market value (i.e. assessed value) is rather a stretch.

Dave Olsen
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I don't know the answer Howard, but I cannot set aside the unjustness of property taxation. I also take issue with the attitude that the municipality owns the property and should seize someone's home if they come upon misfortune. The tail is wagging the dog here. We have no say about paying taxes, we have precious little to say about our assessment and the tax rate. We just have to pay them or else..........

Yeah, we should get to say how much we want to pay to fund government, that is the whole idea behind limiting government. Property taxes are utterly wrong and immoral. Again the system is backwards. Saying oh well, that's the way it is, tough for those who lost out, good for those who will profit on someone's misfortune does not in any way make it right or justifiable.

Howard B. Owens
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Dave, separate issues.

The wrongness of property taxes is irrelevant to present day reality. Make a case for abolishing property taxes, but that doesn't change the fact that they exist today.

To beat up on local officials -- who are your friends, neighbors, relatives, community volunteers, local business owners, etc. -- for trying to collect on those taxes is just mean-spirtied, unless you have a better solution to offer.

Hate the sin, but love the sinner, as they say.

The system is the system. Beating up on the people who run the system is counter-productive and self-defeating.

Mark Potwora
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Howard should the government make a profit on these foreclosures on someone misfortune....Shouldn't the extra be turned back to the owner... I call it stealing when you take an asset that's worth 110,000 dollars but only owes the government 15,000 dollars..And that same government sell the property for 47,000 dollars keeping the profit ..then i call it stealing...

ex.5785 E. Bethany-Le Roy Rd, Bethany Single Fam. .5 $111,600 $15,136 $47,000

Dave Olsen
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I can't separate the issues Howard. It is totally relevant. Those who continue the system, instead of trying to change it don't get a pass. You are either part of the problem or part of the solution. What are my local official, friends, neighbors etc doing to reduce the cost of taxation?

Yes, I have a solution to offer. Instead of trying to stay under a 2% increase in property taxes every year, how about a 2% reduction every year and make government fit the income.

For the 3rd time, the system is backwards, and those who promote that reverse order are the problem.

Kyle Couchman
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Mark when the property is taken for non-payment of taxes, then the govt is the owner. I mean if a friend borrows money because he hits financially hard times, and gives you a vehicle or computer instead of money. If you sell it and make a profit would you like to be required to give everything above what you were owed back to that person?

As for the loss of the property, how do you know it was lost due to misfortune. Perhaps one of those properties belonged to one of the recently convicted child molesters that is now incarcerated. Or some other reason like that. You make an awful lot of assumptions in your accusations.

Jeff Allen
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There are several issues at play here and I agree that they must be separated. When you purchase a piece of property you enter into a tax contract with the municipality on which it is located. The tax rates and valuation of that property are clearly stated upfront (whether you agree with the rate or assessment is a separate issue). If you fail to meet your contractual tax obligation the penalty of seizure has also been clearly defined upfront along with opportunities to pay the tax before seizure. If you cannot afford the tax obligation, you shouldn't purchase the property.
Now as to the misfortune issue. I can't think of a situation where a misfortune is the fault of the municipality. If you make a purchase as large as a home or land and don't insure it, that is not misfortune, that is negligence. If you open a business and it fails that is not the fault of the municipality. The municipality has to bear the upfront cost of the services that the taxation covers (fire, right of ways, water, snow plowing, policing, collection and distribution of those funds). Again, you may not agree with how the municipality achieves all those functions, but they are legally obligated to supply them. When the property goes into tax lien, the municipality also has to bear all the costs of pursuing the tax, repossessing the property, and eventually disposing of it.
All these issues boil down to elections, from local to county to state. If you disagree with how the system is structured or run, vote for or be the candidate who will effect change.

Howard B. Owens
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What Jeff says, Mark.

"Yes, I have a solution to offer. Instead of trying to stay under a 2% increase in property taxes every year, how about a 2% reduction every year and make government fit the income. "

Any kind of Albany-mandated tax cap, freeze, cut, is shifting the burden for Albany's mismanagement from Albany to the local government. That want lead to cuts in waste and mismanagement, which is all but non-existent at the local government level, but it will lead to cuts in service -- roads not paved or repaired, government buildings falling into disrepair, longer lines at the DMV and elsewhere, etc.

My solution to everything -- as we've discussed -- is to turn revenue collection on its head. Strip the power of the state and feds to tax, all taxes are local, and send a percentage upstream to fund limited state and national governments.

That's not going to happen in my lifetime, so meanwhile, we're left to deal with reality.

Mark Potwora
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The town of Batavia has no property tax because they run their government by sales tax..That is the answer..That is reality..Cities and towns can run their governments with any source of income they want..It doesn't have to be through taxation of an asset..

Howard B. Owens
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There's a lot of factors that play into the town's tax rate, including the fact that they have a fire district tax on property that doesn't count as a "town tax." Properties in the town are also assessed county property taxes, which helps pay for their police protection. Properties also are taxed by the school district. So when people don't pay their property taxes in the Town of Batavia, they still get tax liens.

Your formulation also doesn't address all the extra revenue burdens placed on the county government by Albany and Washington. That's what most of your county taxes pay for.

John Roach
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Don't forget, when somebody does not pay their taxes, the cost do not go away, so the unpaid taxes get passed on to the other taxpayers.

Dave Olsen
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I agree Howard that the problem is systemic and the top down mandating is much of the problem. I was referring to a voluntary 2% cut yearly by our county, I do not like state mandates. Revenue should be collected locally via a sales tax and allocated upward starting at the municipal level. No income or property tax, period. I also don't have much hope that it is going to change anytime soon if ever. Too many powerful people are profiting from this bassackwards system. Us little people do not matter. I will never never never stop advocating for that change however. I will not suffer status quo apologists either. It's a system built on the threat of seizure and violence. It's wrong and it sucks.

Mark Potwora
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Amen on that Dave....your last line said it all...... It's a system built on the threat of seizure and violence. It's wrong and it sucks.

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