Assessor says his property value's way off

April 9, 2008 4:40:12 AM PDT
Harvey Levinson might be the last person his neighbors would expect to complain about the assessment on his condominium. After all, he's the county assessor.

But Levinson has asked the Nassau County Assessment Review Commission to knock more than $200,000 off the $502,080 value his own office set for his two-bedroom condo in an upscale Long Island development. If approved, the change would shave an estimated $1,700 off his $13,000 property tax bill for 2009-2010.

Levinson said he was simply trying to point up a clerical error that caused a 75-percent spike in his assessment.

The county Board of Assessors, which he chairs, has asked the review commission to correct the problem for 1,600 condominiums, including Levinson's. But he said he filed a separate grievance because he "wanted to be open about this."

The assessor - who collects a $166,300 annual salary and a $72,000-a-year state pension for serving 27 years as a county prosecutor - added that he expects to retire, sell the condo and move to Florida before the requested reduction might take effect and trim his taxes.

"The new owner will get the benefit," said Levinson, 68.

Review Commission Chairman John Pegullian said the assessor would be treated as any other taxpayer.