(PHOTO: Rye Country Day School faculty housing at 29-39 New Street in Rye.)
The Rye Country Day School must continue to pay Rye City, Rye schools and the county $62K annually to cover the property tax bill for faculty housing it owns in Rye. The school had claimed tax exempt status to avoid property tax payment. The Rye City assessors office, run by Noreen P. Whitty and Patrick Evily, rejected the school’s exemption claim and a judge has now ruled against the private school in support of the assessors.
LoHud.com has a write-up:
“Rye Country Day School has lost its legal bid to take a six-unit townhouse complex off the tax rolls when a state Supreme Court ruling found that housing for faculty wasn’t part of the school’s educational mission.
That means the exclusive private school, whose headmaster earned close to $1 million in 2017, will continue to pay an estimated $62,000 a year to the city of Rye, the Rye city schools, and Westchester County.
The school said it would appeal the decision.
State Supreme Court Justice Bruce Tolbert on Monday backed the Rye city assessor, ruling that the housing perk for teachers in one of Westchester’s highest-priced communities did not qualify for the property-tax exemption.
Tolbert found that providing faculty housing, while beneficial in Rye Country Day School’s recruitment of top-notch teachers, was not an integral part of the educational process for the school’s 900 students. He upheld a 2018 decision by the city’s Board of Assessment Review, which rejected the school’s plea to stop sending tax bills for the complex at 29-39 New St., about a quarter mile from the school’s 26-acre tax-exempt campus…
Rye Country Day School’s attorney Jonathan Kraut, who in 2019 called the Rye City action “a completely improper money grab,” on Tuesday vowed to appeal the decision to the court’s Appellate Division.
Rye Corporation Counsel Kristin Wilson lauded Tolbert’s ruling.”
Read the rest and watch a video report: