Monroe County now provides a 10% property tax exemption for qualifying first responders in an effort to provide relief for emergency workers and volunteer firefighters.

This legislation, signed by New York Governor Kath Hochul, only applies to counties with populations of more than 735,000 to 750,000. Of all the counties in New York, Monroe County is the only one that meets the requirement. This means that other neighboring counties with volunteer firefighters and first responders won’t get the added benefit to their property taxes.

Why the new legislation?

The legislative summary states that the new legislation provides “a tax exemption on real property owned by members of volunteer fire companies or voluntary ambulance services.” The volunteers must have been with the organizations for at least two years. This tax exemption applies to the assessed value of property for the town, village, city, special district, school district, fire district, or county purposes and takes effect as of January 1, 2022.

The bill was sponsored by Sen. Samra Brouk and Assemblywoman Jen Lunsford. According to a release issued by Gov. Hochul, she says, “When trouble calls, our volunteer firefighters and emergency workers are there to answer. These selfless volunteers deserve our full support and I’m proud to sign legislation that rewards them for their sacrifice and encourages others to join their ranks to keep our communities in Monroe County safe.”