Frequently Asked Questions
Assessor's Office FAQs
What is an Assessment?
A property's assessment is a calculated level of market value. The Town works diligently to keep the assessment as close to 100% of market value as possible. The Assessor utilizes standard practices and procedures to uniformly assess the properties within this jurisdiction. Once the property's total assessment is determined, its taxable assessed value is computed by applying any property tax exemptions which will reduce the level of the tax bill to be paid.
Why are property valuation updates done?
In accordance with New York State Law, Townships are required to maintain up-to-date assessment records. The assessment process is performed to correct inequities that creep into the assessment roll. When this happens some property owners may be paying more than their fair share in taxes while others are paying less. A town-wide valuation update serves to equalize these inequities. As a result of the assessment adjustments, some property owners may notice a change in the overall amount of taxes they pay.
How do I get the Senior Citizen’s Exemption?
County, School and Village taxes may be reduced if income provided by seniors falls within the range dictated by a sliding scale. This exemption benefits seniors with low income. The senior’s income must be given to the Assessor each year in order to receive this exemption. (e.g., for 2014’s income the ceiling amount was $37,399.99 this is based on GROSS HOUSEHOLD INCOME, not taxable income). If ALL income, including Social Security, was below this level, the senior would be eligible for the Senior Citizen Exemption.
How do I apply for a STAR exemption?
You will register with New York State instead of applying with your assessor.
I just purchased a house in the Town, why is the assessment is higher than the purchase price?
The Assessor reviews every sale in town, but if you feel that the assessment on your property should be lowered, send a copy of the real estate appraisal that was done during the purchase of the property to the Town Assessor. Most times there is an electronic copy that can be sent by email to the Assessor.
I am a Veteran, how do I get my property taxes lowered?
You must apply for a Veteran’s exemption by completing form RP-458a, and supplying a copy of your DD-214. Applications must be received by March 1st. The Veteran’s exemption applies to Town, County and Village tax bills. It has also be adopted by the Mumford School District to apply to the Mumford school taxes. Call the Assessor to get an application mailed to you.
The name or address on the tax bill is wrong, how do I correct it?
Deeds are filed at the Monroe County Clerk’s Office, however the name is spelled on that deed is how it should be on your tax bill. If the there is a name change due to Marriage/Divorce, send a copy of that to the Assessor. If there is a mailing address change needed, you can call the Assessor to make that change or note the change on the tax bill itself when you make your payment.
Boards & Commissions FAQs
What is the Open Meetings Law and who does it cover?
The Open Meetings Law (“OML”) went into effect in New York in 1977 with the purpose of ensuring that public business of public entities is conducted in an “open and public manner.” This law is based on a presumption of access that provides the public with the right to know in advance about meetings of public bodies and then to observe the meetings and deliberations. The Open Meetings Law applies to "public bodies." That term is defined to include entities consisting of two or more people that conduct public business and perform a governmental function for New York State, for an agency of the state, or for public corporations, such as cities, counties, towns, villages and school districts. Committees and subcommittees of these entities are also included within the definition. Consequently, city councils, town boards, village boards of trustees, school boards, commissions, legislative bodies, and committees and subcommittees consisting of members of those groups all fall within the framework of the Law.
Building Department FAQs
Why do I need a building permit?
Permits ensure that construction within our municipality meets with standards set out in the New York State Building Code and the Code of the Town of Wheatland. Your home renovation project must meet basic requirements for health, safety and structural soundness. Beyond this, the permit process makes sure that your plans are in line with other town requirements, such as zoning regulations and historic building designations. This process also vets contractors for proper insurance and workmanship. Home values are preserved or enhanced with adequate code compliance.
What happens if I don't get a building permit?
The property owner may be subject to legal action for failure to obtain a building permit. If you carry out a renovation project that requires a building permit without having one, the town can issue a "Stop Work" order, which remains in effect until you obtain a permit and involves penalties (currently 4 times the permit cost + $ 100). If the work doesn't meet the requirements of the building code, you may well have to redo the work at your own cost. Work performed without a required building permit may hold up the sale of your property in the future and may also affect an insurance claim. Before any work begins on your home, check with your insurance representative, who can explain exactly what is needed to ensure continuous and adequate coverage, both during and after the renovation.
Dog Control FAQs
What information do I need to get a license for my dog?
In addition to completing a dog license application, the following information is required: If the dog is spayed or neutered - a certificate from a licensed veterinarian or an affidavit from the owner showing that the dog has been spayed or neutered, unless this proof is already on file with the Town Clerk, all dogs 3 months or older must have proof of a rabies vaccination signed by a licensed veterinarian or a certificate stating why the dog would be endangered by the vaccine.
Elected Officials FAQs
How do I register to vote, or change my name or address?
All U.S. citizens 18 years of age and older are eligible to vote, provided they are properly registered. All voter registration, name or address changes are done by mail. Forms are available at the Town Clerk's Office, and may be picked up in person or will be mailed upon request. The registration form must be completed and mailed to the Monroe County Board of Elections, 39 West Main St., Rochester, NY 14614.
What is a Primary Election?
A “Primary Election” is one in which only enrolled members of a party may vote for the purpose of nominating party candidates and electing party officers. In any election district, if a race is uncontested, no primary is held. A “Primary Election” is held on the first Tuesday after the second Monday in September before every general election unless otherwise changed by an act of the legislature. Polls are open for voting from Noon until 9:00 p.m.
Highway Department FAQs
Why can’t the Town of Wheatland do more paving of roads and less oil and stone treatments?
Cost is the main factor. Much like sealing your driveway every few year instead of expensive repaving, the town applies oil and stone to preserve and protect the road surface to extend its life. Oil fills cracks to prevent water from getting into and deteriorating the base, and stone creates a wear surface to build up the road. Stones also allow traffic to travel on the road immediately versus waiting for the oil to dry over several days.
The catch basin (storm drain) near my house is clogged. What should I do?
If you notice the catch basin clogged due to debris on top of it, please clear it away. If it appears that the catch basin is clogged inside, please contact the Highway Department. Please be advised that the Town has many catch basins to clear and clean and it is helpful if the residents keep the tops of the catch basins in front of their properties clean and clear from all debris.
What happens if my mailbox is hit by a snow plow?
Call the Town of Wheatland Highway Department at (585) 538-6535 or 889-1553 option 6.
What is the process for taking care of a dead deer along the side of a Town road?
Call the Town of Wheatland Highway Department at (585) 538-6535 or 889-1553 option 6.
What should I do to report a pot hole or another road condition concern?
Call the Town of Wheatland Highway Department at (585) 538-6535 or 889-1553 option 6.
Recreation Department FAQs
Why do we need to fill out a registration form for each program?
Registration forms provide us with the necessary information to give to program leaders. They give us medical information that can change at anytime, emergency phone numbers, doctors phone numbers and more. They help us offer you a safe program.
When are program brochures and flyers published?
Program brochures and flyers are published on approximately a seasonal basis and are available on this website, the Town of Wheatland Facebook Page or at the Recreation Department Office.
Refuse Collection & Recycling FAQs
Are there special requirements for disposing of materials such as old paint, chemicals and cleaners?
Yes, these items are considered hazardous waste and must be disposed off properly. Monroe County has a site for disposing of hazardous waste at Eco Park, 10 Avion Drive that is available year round.
Does Wheatland recycle electronics for Town residents?
The Town of Wheatland has an electronic recycling drop off day each spring at the Highway Garage location. This service is free to all Town residents outside of the Village of Scottsville. Otherwise, you may dispose of items at the Monroe County Eco Park site at 10 Avion Drive.
Senior Center FAQs
Do I have to sign up for Senior Center the Hot Lunch Program?
Reservations for the Hot Lunch Program can be made in advance by calling 889-1284 or stop by the Senior Center during open hours to sign up. A monthly menu calendar is available.
I am 60 years old, but my spouse is younger than me, can they use the Senior Center?
The Senior Center is designed specifically for the enjoyment and leisure of the mature adult population, ages 60 years and above (and their spouse of any age).
Town Board FAQs
How do I get an item on the Town Board agenda?
Agenda item requests must be submitted in writing to the Town Supervisor at least one week prior to a scheduled Town Board meeting and should be accompanied by any appropriate background material. Items are placed on the agenda at the discretion of the Supervisor's Office. If the item concerns a proposed local law, it must be introduced by a legislative official, therefore will need to be sponsored by a member of the Town Board.
How do I express my concern for an item not on the agenda?
A listing of topics that the chair reasonably anticipates will be discussed at the meeting must be on the agenda. With that said, every Town Board meeting provides time for a Public Comment period. This is your opportunity to address the Board on any subject matter that is within the jurisdiction of the Town, and that does not appear as a regular agenda item. The Town Board is not permitted (by law) to take any action on issues raised during the Public Comment period, but they may refer matters to board members for response or official action at a future date.
Town Budget FAQs
How is the tax levy determined?
Each town in New York State is responsible for calculating its own tax levy limit within the boundaries established by the New York Real Property Tax Cap.
Town Clerk's Office FAQs
Where do I go for a marriage license?
You can go to any town or city office in New York State. Our Town Clerk's Office would be glad to provide your marriage license. Remember applications must be made at least 24 hours, but no more than 60 days, prior to the marriage ceremony.
How do I request a copy of my Marriage License/Certificate?
Marriage records originally obtained in the Town Clerk's office can always be requested from the Town Clerk in person or by the mail. A copy of a valid photo ID of either the bride or groom is required.
What is included in my Town & County Tax Bill?
Refer to a sample General Property Tax bill for descriptions of the tax levies included in the Town and County tax bill.
When do I need a Peddler's Permit?
Unless associated with a not-for-profit group, anyone soliciting door-to-door or selling goods on a transient basis from a stationary site needs to apply at the Town Clerk's Office for a permit. All completed and signed applications are sent to the Monroe County Sheriff's Office for a background check. If an application is found unsatisfactory by the Monroe County Sheriff's Office and it has endorsed its disapproval on the application, the Clerk shall notify the applicant that the application is disapproved and shall deny the applicant any license. If an application is found satisfactory by the Monroe County Sheriff's Office, the Clerk shall issue a license to the applicant specifying the particular business authorized.
This license is nontransferable and shall be in the continuous possession of the licensee while engaged in the business licensed. This license must be produced upon the demand of any Town official, prospective buyer, police officer or sheriff. All sales people should have a copy of the license upon their persons.
Town Court FAQs
Do I need an Attorney?
Whether or not you need an attorney to handle your traffic infraction is a personal decision that only you can make. If your license is in jeopardy based on the point system or if a traffic charge resulted from an accident you are advised to consult an attorney. If you are charged with a criminal offense, you are also advised to consult an attorney.
I can't make my court date, what should I do?
Please contact your attorney, do not call the court. If you do not have an attorney, you must have a valid excuse to change the date, in this circumstance call the Court Clerk at (585) 889-3074.
Town History FAQs
What is the role of the Town Historian and where is the Town Historian's office located?
The Town Historian is an employee of the Town of Wheatland responsible for keeping files on all types of historic materials pertaining to Wheatland from the earliest times of settlement through the present day. The Town Historian has an office in the Wheatland Municipal Building.
How did the Town of Wheatland get its name?
In February of 1821 a new county was formed from Ontario and Genesee County and was named Monroe County. A line was drawn east to west through the Town of Caledonia. The southern part retained the name Caledonia and became part of Livingston County. The northern section was called “Inverness” and was in Monroe County. The name Inverness was obviously chosen by the Scottish segment to honor their homeland. Two months later, when the first town meeting was held, objections were raised, and the name was changed to “Wheatland” in order to better represent the town.
Does the Town Historian have copies of my ancestor's Government related documents (i.e., birth certificate, death certificate) ?
Birth and death records are not kept at the local level. Inquiries should be directed to the Monroe County Office of Vital Records. The Town Clerk's Office has marriage records beginning in 1880. The Historian’s office has records for all the cemeteries in town up to 1980. They are also accessible online as part of the New York GenWeb project for Monroe County.
How old is my house in Wheatland?
The Town Historian has histories of some Wheatland houses, particularly the ones that have been listed on the National Register of Historic Places. There are also family memoirs that have information about houses. Maps published in 1858, 1872, 1902 and 1924 show the location of houses and the owners’ names. The best source of information about your house is the Abstract of the Deed. If that is not in your possession, a deed search can be done in person at the Monroe County Clerk’s Office.
What are all the strange hills and valleys in Oatka Park?
For many years, the land between Oatka Creek and the Scottsville-Mumford Road was mined for gypsum. There were entrances into the mines throughout the park area. When Monroe County bought the land for the park, some excavation was done that closed the entrances, but many indentations remain.
Can I get a grant to fix up my old house?
Generally, grants are not given to restore private property. There may be loans or tax exemptions available. Contact the Landmark Society of Western New York for more information.
Are there restrictions on what I can do to renovate my old house?
The only area in the Town of Wheatland that has such restrictions is the Historic District of Rochester Street in the Village of Scottsville. The town has no Preservation Ordinance. Zoning Laws and Building Codes apply to all properties.
How can I get my house listed on the National Register of Historic Places?
The Town Historian encourages all eligible properties to be registered. Please contact the office if you are interested in applying. The National Register of Historic Places has no authority to restrict changes to your property, but gives recognition to the historic importance and value of our landmarks.
Town Supervisor FAQs
Do I need an appointment to see the Town Supervisor?
The Town Supervisor serves at the request of the residents and therefore welcomes visitors to Town Hall and will make every effort to meet with them and respond to their concerns. As the Town Supervisor is a part-time position, an appointment is recommended to ensure that the Supervisor is available when you arrive.
If I have a concern or question about a Town Department, should I call the Town Supervisor?
If you have a concern or question about a Town department, never hesitate to contact the Town Supervisor. The Supervisor will make every effort to answer your question, resolve your issue or explain a process or procedure. If needed, the Supervisor will contact the department in an effort to resolve your particular issue or receive a more detailed explanation.