New York State Assessment Community Enterprise System (ACES)
For decades, New York State has provided counties and municipalities with the option to use—at a reduced cost—software for local property tax administration. The current system is known as Real Property System Version 4 or RPSV4, and more than 95% of local governments across the state have used it for nearly two decades.
Early in 2017, the Tax Department contracted with Tyler Technologies, Inc. on the next version of the system: The Assessment Community Enterprise System (ACES). The new system will be available to local governments beginning in late 2019.
Like its predecessors, the Assessment Community Enterprise System (ACES) will be a comprehensive system for the local administration of property tax assessments. However, for the first time, this system will be web-based. Rather than having separate installations of the software on your computer, you and your fellow local officials will:
- use a web browser to log in to a centralized and secured online system, and
- use the same version of the system without having to install updates.
ACES will be sized accordingly to handle the potential demand of thousands of local government users, many of whom will be performing similar functions on the same calendar.
In addition to the functions available in RPSV4, ACES will include:
- enhanced document management,
- a built-in geographic information system (GIS),
- comprehensive auditing,
- access from any computer with a compatible web browser,
- a mobile application, and
- a separate website to make select assessment information available to the public.
Despite the significantly expanded functionality, ACES will be available to local governments at the same fee structure currently used for RPSV4.
New York State will centrally store the data associated with the Assessment Community Enterprise System (ACES). The database and data will be housed at the state data center. It will be partitioned and secure for each municipality.
We will maintain a disaster recovery site to back up the data; local back-ups will no longer be necessary.The Tax Department takes data security very seriously and closely guards tens of millions of Social Security numbers and other tax return data. Similar security protocols will be used to protect assessment roll data from intrusion.
Recognizing that many local governments use the data from RPSV4 for an array of programs and services, data extracts from ACES will be available in the same file formats that are currently used.
We will have multi-tiered support for ACES, which will include ORPTS Regional Liaisons, a centralized RPS Support Team, and the New York State Call Center.
While New York State will set up accounts for local officials, each municipality will control access permissions.
The attached document from Tyler Technologies, Inc. includes general recommendations for users of their desktop and mobile products.
The RPSV4 Data Anomaly Finder (DAF) provides you with the opportunity to review parcel data that may require a change.
The tool consists of scripts and reports contained in a single Excel workbook. Running these scripts does not change your data, but it does generate reports that identify areas that may need attention. It is up to you to determine whether changes are appropriate, and to make those changes.
By reviewing your data for errors and inconsistencies, you will assist with a smoother transition to ACES in future years, and help to ensure that property owners in your jurisdiction receive property tax credits timely and accurately.
Localities that don’t use RPSV4 may wish to review the DAF Query Summary.
Q: Will the new system be named RPSV5?
A: No, the name of the new system will be the New York State Assessment Community Enterprise System (ACES).
Q: What will be the fees for ACES and associated support?
A: The fee structure will be the same as it is for RPSV4.
Q: How will fixes and updates to ACES occur?
A: We will make periodic system updates and notify users prior to their rollout. You will no longer run updates locally. We expect to make the updates after business hours to avoid impacts on your use of the system.
Q: Since ACES will be web-based, will it be able to handle all municipalities performing similar functions at peak times?
A: Yes. We are sizing the system to handle statewide demands.
Q: What type of equipment will I need in my local government office?
A: You will need to have a device that can connect to the Internet through a web browser.
Q: What type of Internet connection will I need?
A: We recommend that you have high-speed Internet access.
Q: How will I access ACES?
A: You’ll log in to the system using a web browser such as Internet Explorer, Firefox, or Chrome. (Most devices have a web browser installed prior to purchase.)
Q: Will I have access to ACES 24 hours a day, seven days a week?
A: Yes, except for system maintenance windows, which we expect to schedule during nonbusiness hours.
Q: Who will have access to the data for my municipality?
A: Only the authorized users that the primary local official (assessor or county property tax director) designates will have privileges to update, insert, and delete data for your municipality. Other users will have inquiry access.
Q: Will the public have access to ACES?
A: No, the public will have access to a separate database and website that contains a limited subset of assessment data.
Q: Will New York State or the county update certain fields for municipalities (for example, equalization rates)?
A: Municipal officials will manage the data. New York State is responsible for the central administration of the system.
Q: Will localities be able to run simulations for valuation or tax preparation, or will all processing happen in real time?
A: ACES will be able to process what-if scenarios without impacting the real-time data. Although, the assessor can choose to accept the data.
Q: Will ACES work with Sales Scan?
A: Yes, the new system will accept the extract from Sales Scan.
Q: Where will the data be located?
A: We will house the system and all data at the New York State data center.
Q: Will you house all the data in one database?
A: Yes, the ACES database will include multiple tables, and be partitioned and secure for each municipality.
Q: Will I be able to run extracts for the various local programs that rely on RPSV4 data?
A: Yes, you will be able to extract the data in the same file formats you currently use.
Q: Will I be able to have external applications link directly to the ACES database, as I currently do with RPSV4?
A: No. You can use periodic extracts to maintain timely data for the external applications.
Q: How will I back up the data?
A: You won’t need to maintain a backup file. New York State will perform periodic backups and maintain a disaster-recovery site.
Q: Will you protect the data from hacking and breaches?
A: Yes, the Tax Department takes data security very seriously and closely guards tens of millions of Social Security numbers and tax return data. We will use similar security protocols to protect ACES data from intrusion.
Q: What localities will be pilots for ACES?
A: These are the pilot communities:
- Cayuga County
- Clinton County
- Towns of Glenville and Niskayuna
- Town of Greenburgh
- City of Niagara Falls
- Orleans County
- Town of Queensbury
- Tompkins County
- City of Watertown
- Wyoming County
- City of Yonkers
- Town of Rye
Q: Will the pilot counties work with data from all municipalities in their county?
A: No, the four pilot counties will only use data from the municipalities listed above that have agreed to share their data for the pilot.
Q: During the pilot period, will the public or other local officials have access to the ACES data?
A: No, during the pilot period only the pilot community, county (if involved), and state officials will have access to the pilot data.
Q: How long will pilot counties maintain data in parallel systems?
A: We expect initial pilot counties to run parallel systems for 10–12 weeks. As more counties choose to participate in the pilot, the length of time counties need to maintain parallel systems may decrease.
Q: Will pilot counties be able to import RPSV4 data into ACES?
A: No. However, for municipalities participating in the pilot, we will convert and import their data into ACES prior to testing.
Immediately prior to statewide implementation, we will convert and import the RPSV4 data into ACES for all municipalities, because the RPSV4 data is the data-of-record up until the point of implementing the new system.
Q: Will you convert and import final assessment roll data into the new system when a locality implements ACES?
A: Yes. The ORPTS team will work with each municipality to convert and import their data.
Q: How many years of historical roll data can you convert and import into ACES?
A: We will work with localities to convert and import five years of historical data. For access to data older than five years, local officials can continue to use RPSV4.
Q: Who will I contact if I need support?
A: We’re developing a multi-tiered support system you can contact. It will include the ORPTS Regional Liaisons, the RPS Support Team, and the New York State Call Center.
Q: Who will set up my ACES account?
A: New York State will set up accounts for local officials. Each municipality will control access permissions.