Skip universal navigation
Skip to main content

Department of Taxation and Finance

Exemptions from real property taxation in New York State: 2016 county, city, and town assessment rolls

Introduction

All real property in New York is subject to taxation unless specific legal provisions grant it exempt status, whereas personal property is not subject to taxation. Real property tax exemptions are granted on the basis of many different criteria, including the use to which the property is put, the owner's ability to pay taxes, the desire of the state and local governments to encourage certain economic or social activities, and other such considerations.1 Certain exemptions provide full relief from taxation (wholly exempt property) and others reduce the taxes which would otherwise be payable by varying degrees (partially exempt property). Some exemptions apply to taxes levied for county, city/town, and school purposes, whereas others pertain only to some of these purposes. Yet another difference involves the extent of local government autonomy: while some exemptions are mandated by state law, others are subject to local option and/or local determination of eligibility criteria.

This report presents exemption data for 2016 assessment rolls prepared by local assessors throughout New York.2 It covers town, city, and county (Tompkins and Nassau Counties) assessment rolls only; village rolls are not included.

Ultimately, the accuracy of the figures presented depends on the accuracy of the data submitted on the rolls. Although the overwhelming majority of reported exemptions could be related to specific legal provisions through the standardized reporting system provided by NYS Department of Taxation and Finance, Office of Real Property Tax Services (ORPTS), a very small percentage could not be classified because incorrect codes were used, and are thus omitted from certain tables in this report. Similarly, any errors made by assessors in determining the value of a parcel, or the extent to which this value is exempt from taxation, will appear in the data contained herein. Also, experience has shown that some assessors may not keep the values placed on wholly exempt property fully up to date, as valuation of such property has, for the most part, no effect on local tax revenue. Incorrect assessed values may overstate or understate the effect of exemptions on local tax bases.

The remainder of the report presents a summary of the 2016 statewide statistics on exempt property, followed by Appendix A which contains a list of abbreviations and definitions for terms used in the detailed tables that comprise Appendix B.

 Figure 1 is showing two pie charts. 1st pie chart Percent of exemptions is showing Partly exempt, private at 95.2%; partly exempt, public 0.2% ; wholly exempt, private at 1.6%, and wholly exempt, public at 3.0%. 2nd pie chart is Percent of exempt value, shows wholly exempt, public at 49.7%; privately exempt, private at 34.8%; wholly exempt, private at 15.0%; partly exempt, public at 0.5%

Table 1. Real property tax exemptions by property group, 2016 assessment rolls
GroupNumber of exemptionsEqualized exempt value ($000)
A. Residential property other than multiple dwellings non-residential property owned by certain individuals 3,779,201 217,192,735
B. Property of New York State government and agencies 21,506 75,940,682
C. Property of municipal governments and agencies, school districts, BOCES, and special districts 113,053 233,767,406
D. Property of U.S. and foreign governments and agencies, international or interstate agencies, and Indian tribes 4,786 59,248,555
E. Property of private community service organizations, social organizations, and professional societies 70,194 122,868,187
F. Industrial, commercial, and public service property 22,885 79,364,035
G. Urban renewal property, public housing, and private subsidized housing (multiple dwellings) 118,954 80,246,381
H. Agricultural and forest property 113,276 8,593,195
Total, valid exemption codes 4,243,855 877,221,176
Invalid codes 2,937 924,546
Total 4,246,792 $878,145,722

 

Table 2. Exemptions for county purposes: Geographic areas with highest and lowest incidence of exempt value, 2016 assessment rolls
A. Ten with highest incidence
RankCountiesCitiesTowns
NamePct. exemptNamePct. exemptNamePct. exempt
1. Tompkins 39.20% Rensselaer (Ren.) 67.26% Harrisburg (Lew.) 90.31%
2. Oswego 37.81% Salamanca (Cat.) 64.90% Clinton (Cli.) 87.26%
3. Seneca 37.50% Albany (Alb.) 63.01% Ashford (Cat.) 87.13%
4. St Lawrence 36.98% Ogdensburg (St. L.) 59.03% Scriba (Osw.) 85.67%
5. Niagara 35.89% Geneva (Ont.) 59.00% Alfred (All.) 79.17%
6. Cattaraugus 33.92% Ithaca (Tom.) 58.41% Martinsburg (Lew.) 78.90%
7. Wyoming 33.86% Dunkirk (Cha.) 53.72% Somerset (Nia.) 77.91%
8. Albany 33.61% Syracuse (Ono.) 51.68% Romulus (Sen.) 77.60%
9 Oneida 33.34% Peekskill (Wes.) 49.90% Blenheim (Sch.) 74.88%
10. Allegany 31.84% Oneonta (Ots.) 47.16% Athens (Gre.) 73.23%
B. Ten with lowest incidence
RankCountiesCitiesTowns
NamePct. exemptNamePct. exemptNamePct. exempt
1. Hamilton 8.51% Sherrill (One.) 10.40% Benson (Ham.) 1.07%
2. Putnam 11.00% Mechanicville (Sar.) 11.68% Arietta (Ham.) 2.26%
3. Warren 11.16% Long Beach (Nas.) 11.93% Inlet (Ham.) 2.57%
4. Saratoga 14.14% Tonawanda (Eri.) 14.77% Pittsfield (Ots.) 2.82%
5. Ulster 14.44% Lockport (Nia.) 15.51% Stratford (Ful.) 3.05%
6. Washington 14.91% Rye (Wes.) 16.21% Bolton (War.) 3.38%
7. Suffolk 15.18% North Tonawanda (Nia.) 16.38% Wayne (Ste.) 3.43%
8. Rockland 16.16% Saratoga Springs (Sar.) 17.84% Hope (Ham.) 3.53%
9. Fulton 16.44% Glen Cove (Nas.) 19.33% Ohio (Her.) 3.56%
10. Columbia 16.47% Port Jervis (Ora.) 21.30% Bleecker (Ful.) 3.72%

 

Table 3. Exemptions for county purposes: Counties ranked by percent of full value exempt, 2016 assessment rolls*
RankCountyNo. of exemptionsExempt value ($000)Pct. of value exempt
1. Tompkins 27,498 4,671,923 39.20%
2. Oswego 41,562 3,265,929 37.81%
3. Seneca 13,471 1,284,470 37.50%
4. St Lawrence 42,738 3,321,320 36.98%
5. Niagara 79,699 5,974,920 35.89%
6. Cattaraugus 31,156 2,161,184 33.92%
7. Wyoming 17,841 1,168,782 33.86%
8. Albany 85,010 12,396,222 33.61%
9. Oneida 83,760 5,453,492 33.34%
10. Allegany 20,317 936,880 31.84%
11. Montgomery 19,445 1,053,632 31.72%
12. Lewis 12,803 976,716 31.68%
13. Schoharie 14,221 944,637 29.99%
14. Clinton 28,445 2,043,681 29.70%
15. Jefferson 34,636 3,160,893 28.36%
16. Greene 17,241 2,189,517 28.25%
17. Rensselaer 51,019 3,956,409 27.85%
18. Broome 62,770 3,597,855 27.26%
19. Steuben 40,644 2,111,154 26.79%
20. Livingston 23,080 1,250,609 26.44%
21. Genesee 24,414 986,939 25.71%
22. Onondaga 154,795 8,880,131 24.93%
23. Chautauqua 50,354 2,351,823 24.71%
24. Franklin 16,127 1,098,117 23.73%
25. Yates 11,232 750,980 23.43%
26. Cayuga 31,806 1,422,071 23.26%
27. Tioga 20,174 766,880 22.89%
28. Madison 27,851 1,187,772 22.77%
29. Chemung 28,717 1,218,261 22.27%
30. Cortland 16,489 652,576 21.96%
31. Schenectady 49,160 2,674,894 21.91%
32. Westchester 185,276 46,307,615 21.68%
33. Ontario 41,171 2,408,214 21.49%
34. Otsego 21,864 1,211,717 21.48%
35. Erie 320,024 14,945,143 21.38%
36. Nassau 408,616 59,054,277 21.25%
37. Orleans 16,112 459,527 21.13%
38. Essex 16,409 1,645,139 20.56%
39. Wayne 37,592 1,214,014 19.77%
40. Sullivan 24,998 1,863,735 19.74%
41. Chenango 19,577 578,058 19.64%
42. Monroe 229,821 10,152,043 19.51%
43. Dutchess 85,336 7,184,616 19.26%
44. Herkimer 23,981 1,012,380 18.77%
45. Orange 99,935 7,056,818 18.52%
46. Schuyler 8,535 312,276 17.96%
47. Delaware 18,987 1,145,019 16.66%
48. Columbia 22,536 1,465,788 16.47%
49. Fulton 20,127 6,627,757 16.44%
50. Rockland 81,041 7,007,956 16.16%
51. Suffolk 489,012 52,759,745 15.18%
52. Washington 25,396 831,445 14.91%
53. Ulster 57,823 3,006,396 14.44%
54. Saratoga 77,124 3,955,895 14.14%
55. Warren 24,629 1,346,809 11.16%
56. Putnam 32,134 1,665,458 11.00%
57. Hamilton 2,767 255,026 8.51%
*Excludes New York City boroughs; New York City data included in Table 4.

 

Table 4. Exemptions for county purposes: Cities ranked by percent of full value exempt, 2016 assessment rolls
RankCityNo. of exemptionsExempt value ($000)Pct. of value exempt
1. Rensselaer 662 874,394 67.26%
2. Salamanca 1,442 160,519 64.90%
3. Albany 6,578 8,251,961 63.01%
4. Ogdensburg 1,214 392,662 59.03%
5. Geneva 964 571,128 59.00%
6. Ithaca 827 2,585,508 58.41%
7. Dunkirk 1,272 405,417 53.72%
8. Syracuse 8,547 4,940,591 51.68%
9. Peekskill 944 1,689,315 49.90%
10. Oneonta 576 438,620 47.16%
11. Watervliet 522 334,087 46.59%
12. Troy 2,553 1,501,231 46.01%
13. Niagara Falls 4,981 1,264,536 45.61%
14. Little Falls 384 12,843 45.02%
15. Rome 3,478 861,599 43.96%
16. Newburgh 1,051 566,627 39.32%
17. Schenectady 4,491 1,150,852 38.21%
18. Jamestown 2,459 394,154 37.44%
19. Cortland 950 310,473 36.40%
20. Oswego 1,196 447,896 36.24%
21. Norwich 436 124,643 36.17%
22. Elmira 1,783 388,967 36.06%
23. Yonkers 6,757 8,861,879 36.00%
24. Utica 1,750 822,920 35.55%
25. Plattsburgh 1,289 503,181 34.94%
26. Auburn 2,167 527,301 34.73%
27. Buffalo 21,006 4,407,317 34.66%
28. Hudson 545 221,808 34.49%
29. Binghamton 2,973 731,964 33.91%
30. White Plains 1,513 4,417,918 33.86%
31. Olean 1,269 269,469 33.52%
32. Watertown 1,769 550,577 32.27%
33. New York City 834,909 421,516,059 30.51%
34. Johnstown 729 193,271 30.28%
35. Hornell 832 105,489 30.05%
36. Poughkeepsie 1,271 678,403 29.81%
37. Cohoes 1,096 343,853 29.53%
38. Canandaigua 660 295,684 29.53%
39. Batavia 1,309 231,130 29.15%
40. Rochester 11,457 2,635,351 28.91%
41. Amsterdam 1,352 180,489 28.80%
42. Oneida 1,096 180,092 28.13%
43. New Rochelle 2,197 3,269,785 26.70%
44. Gloversville 1,190 132,745 26.47%
45. Corning 995 217,427 26.08%
46. Glens Falls 1,137 348,349 25.77%
47. Lackawanna 1,923 199,653 24.97%
48. Kingston 1,595 447,700 24.47%
49. Fulton 921 105,248 24.32%
50. Mt Vernon 1,492 1,460,069 24.31%
51. Beacon 788 333,714 23.67%
52. Middletown 1,128 386,707 22.15%
53. Port Jervis 626 103,399 21.30%
54. Glen Cove 661 903,187 19.33%
55. Saratoga Springs 1,462 916,984 17.84%
56. North Tonawanda 3,545 269,751 16.38%
57. Rye 561 1,660,957 16.21%
58. Lockport 1,415 138,874 15.51%
59. Tonawanda 1,735 111,319 14.77%
60. Long Beach 1,283 633,816 11.93%
61. Mechanicville 261 31,664 11.68%
62. Sherrill 56 20,691 10.40%
Table 5. Exemptions for county purposes: Towns with over 50 percent full value exempt, 2016 assessment rolls
RankTownNo. of exemptionsExempt value ($000)Pct. of value exempt
1. Harrisburg 246 239,813 90.31%
2. Clinton 234 314,824 87.26%
3. Ashford 371 905,038 87.13%
4. Scriba 696 1,856,777 85.67%
5. Alfred 316 360,925 79.17%
6. Martinsburg 455 315,785 78.90%
7. Somerset 418 543,052 77.91%
8. Romulus 425 627,083 77.60%
9. Blenheim 143 111,920 74.88%
10. Athens 521 1,326,148 73.23%
11. Eagle 388 171,357 72.96%
12. Marcy 644 1,224,089 72.51%
13. Greenwood 281 136,054 72.04%
14. Massena 1,275 1,189,202 68.76%
15. Verona 975 694,984 68.61%
16. Le Ray 789 1,081,416 68.01%
17. Lewiston 1,487 2,474,670 67.71%
18. Chateaugay 350 168,999 67.20%
19. Wethersfield 307 118,381 64.88%
20. Orangeville 342 170,441 62.96%
21. Altona 386 178,495 62.93%
22. Florida 490 334,537 61.48%
23. Ellenburg 416 189,167 60.92%
24. Cohocton 691 169,386 59.44%
25. Eaton 663 274,073 56.51%
26. Jasper 388 897,631 56.30%
27. Sheldon 566 211,531 55.85%
28. Bombay 123 76,412 54.11%
29. Fairfield 347 102,661 52.74%
30. Caneadea 352 93,651 51.75%
31. Delhi 357 330,651 51.32%
32. Hamilton 561 279,309 51.02%
33. Sharon 409 101,324 50.82%
34. Groveland 344 139,304 50.60%
35. Waddington 383 138,229 50.35%
Table 6. Geographic areas with highest and lowest incidence of
local-option exempt value, 2016 assessment rolls
A. Ten with highest incidence
RankCountiesCitiesTowns
NamePct. local-option*NamePct. local-option*NamePct. local-option*
1. Lewis 50.51% Johnstown (Ful.) 41.02% Harrisburg (Lew.) 95.63%
2. Oswego 42.76% Saratoga Springs (Sar.) 27.80% Martinsburg (Lew.) 88.54%
3. Fulton 20.71% Cohoes (Alb.) 20.68% Scriba (Osw.) 84.47%
4. Hamilton 19.74% Sherrill (One.) 19.96% Ontario (Way.) 64.52%
5. Wayne 19.43% Lackawanna (Eri.) 19.42% Shelter Island (Suf.) 50.73%
6. Nassau 15.37% Auburn (Cay.) 19.15% Lake Pleasant (Ham.) 43.07%
7. Suffolk 14.68% Long Beach (Nas.) 17.55% Chautauqua (Cha.) 40.87%
8. Columbia 14.62% Glen Cove (Nas.) 15.74% Herkimer (Her.) 36.89%
9. Warren 14.14% North Tonawanda (Nia.) 14.85% Rhinebeck (Dut.) 36.13%
10. Saratoga 13.95% Hudson (Col.) 14.49% Jewett (Gre.) 35.02%
B. Ten with lowest incidence
RankCountiesCitiesTowns
NamePct. local-option*NamePct. local-option*NamePct. local-option*
1. Tompkins 3.14% Ithaca (Tom.) 1.37% Red House (Cat.) 0.22%
2. Wyoming 4.44% Little Falls (Her.) 2.21% Clinton (Cli.) 0.29%
3. Delaware 4.45% White Plains (Wes.) 2.47% Alfred (All.) 0.53%
4. Allegany 4.51% Geneva (Ont.) 2.89%

 Blenheim (Sch.)

0.60%
5. Cattaraugus 5.22% Rensselaer (Ren.) 2.93% Ashford (Cat.) 0.64%
6. St Lawrence 5.29% Albany (Alb.) 2.94% Romulus (Sen.) 0.73%
7. Schoharie 5.32% Peekskill (Wes.) 3.18% Delhi (Del.) 0.84%
8. Montgomery 5.55% Ogdensburg (St. L.) 3.92% Eagle (Wyo.) 1.00%
9. Seneca 5.68% Elmira (Che.) 4.20% Norway (Her.) 1.08%
10. Niagara 5.70% Dunkirk (Cha.) 4.37% Florida (Mon.) 1.16%
*Exempt value of local-option exemptions divided by total exempt value.

 

Table 7. Exempt value attributable to local option, counties ranked by percent of exempt value, 2016 assessment rolls
RankCountyExempt value local option ($000)Total exempt value ($000)Pct. of value exempt
1. Lewis 638,942 1,264,930 50.51%
2. Oswego 1,864,861 4,360,793 42.76%
3. Fulton 241,552 1,166,329 20.71%
4. Hamilton 65,759 333,132 19.74%
5. Wayne 421,298 2,167,936 19.43%
6. Nassau 14,605,405 94,998,825 15.37%
7. Suffolk 10,861,138 73,986,070 14.68%
8. Columbia 296,138 2,025,742 14.62%
9. Warren 284,500 2,011,678 14.14%
10. Saratoga 940,813 6,746,518 13.95%
11. Washington 201,530 1,446,009 13.94%
12. Putnam 416,146 3,127,656 13.31%
13. Monroe 2,158,729 16,230,276 13.30%
14. Ulster 596,884 4,589,765 13.00%
15. Erie 2,958,069 23,187,516 12.76%
16. Herkimer 208,381 1,636,331 12.73%
17. Rockland 1,427,444 11,363,017 12.56%
18. Onondaga 1,522,492 12,744,877 11.95%
19. Broome 628,877 5,310,905 11.84%
20. Dutchess 1,184,304 10,238,251 11.57%
21. Cayuga 249,350 2,161,812 11.53%
22. Schenectady 465,519 4,038,421 11.53%
23. Rensselaer 605,717 5,280,995 11.47%
24. Orleans 95,911 860,204 11.15%
25. Orange 1,118,211 10,339,836 10.81%
26. Chautauqua 345,594 3,626,673 9.53%
27. Madison 172,556 1,847,477 9.34%
28. Cortland 94,397 1,062,416 8.89%
29. Sullivan 203,230 2,453,409 8.28%
30. Essex 160,786 2,029,619 7.92%
31. Jefferson 315,113 3,980,829 7.92%
32. Livingston 140,924 1,836,191 7.67%
33. Ontario 267,951 3,497,683 7.66%
34. Clinton 207,354 2,739,170 7.57%
35. Westchester 4,595,932 63,279,874 7.26%
36. Genesee 112,990 1,560,695 7.24%
37. Albany 1,049,165 14,722,308 7.13%
38. Chenango 74,549 1,057,314 7.05%
39. Oneida 532,547 7,556,997 7.05%
40. Otsego 127,090 1,806,638 7.03%
41. Steuben 213,067 3,094,677 6.88%
42. Tioga 87,698 1,290,400 6.80%
43. Franklin 98,546 1,514,193 6.51%
44. Greene 168,464 2,748,812 6.13%
45. Schuyler 31,284 514,072 6.09%
46. Chemung 123,112 2,029,096 6.07%
47. Yates 59,471 1,003,673 5.93%
48. Niagara 463,354 8,127,035 5.70%
49. Seneca 92,218 1,623,840 5.68%
50. Montgomery 84,600 1,525,235 5.55%
51. Schoharie 67,750 1,273,209 5.32%
52. St Lawrence 229,636 4,338,400 5.29%
53. Cattaraugus 151,493 2,903,954 5.22%
54. Allegany 62,303 1,382,556 4.51%
55. Delaware 73,910 1,662,588 4.45%
56. Wyoming 70,395 1,585,041 4.44%
57. Tompkins 167,618 5,337,764 3.14%
Table 8. City/Town distribution of exempt value attributable to local option exemptions: 2016 assessment rolls
Percent of value in local option exemptionsNumber of cities/townsPercent of cities/towns
0 - 9.99 573 57.646%
10 - 19.99 364 36.620%
20 - 29.99 41 4.125%
30 - 39.99 8 0.805%
40 or more 8 0.805%

1 Most exemptions are granted under Article 4 of the Real Property Tax Law, but others are authorized by a wide variety of statutes ranging from the Agriculture and Markets Law to the Transportation Law.

2The material in the report relates to exemptions only. Not covered are the restricted assessments which apply to certain types of property (e.g., condominiums), tax abatement programs, and formerly real property which has been statutorily redefined as personal (non-taxable) property (e.g., certain switching equipment owned by telephone companies). Restricted assessments, tax abatements, and statutory redefinitions, like exemptions, are tax expenditures in that they reduce or shift tax liability.

 

| Table of Contents | Top of Page |

Updated: