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Town assessor announces retirement

WARRENSBURG The towns sole assessor, who served in his post with dedication for nearly eight years but recently faced controversy over his assessments, has resigned. The Warrensburg Town Board accepted a retirement notice Wednesday from Roger Langworthy. His retirement is effective Aug 18. Langworthy found himself at the center of a controversy in town earlier this year when he released assessments that reflected an average of about 30 percent increase. The raised valuations were primarily due to a townwide revaluation project, with an objective of bringing all 2,700 properties in town up to 100 percent of market value, rather than substantially below, where they had been for years. But some townspeople saw their valuations double, while others stayed virtually the same or reduced, and there seemed to be widespread disparity between valuations in similar plots. As a result, townspeople filled the town hall in April and vented their anger at the disparities, and a record number of grievances were filed this year a total of 93 which is believed to be a record in town history. Langworthy was contacted Wednesday for comment, but declined to be interviewed. Warrensburg Town Supervisor Kevin Geraghty said Roger retired because of health issues he has incurred over the past several years. His doctors told him it would be better if he was to retire, Geraghty said, adding that the controversy wasnt a factor in his departure. Rogers decision was based solely on his medical condition. Town Councilman Austin Markey offered his comments Wednesday. Revaluations are hard on any community, we did everything as we were told, he said. After review of the revaluation, several of the properties were very high, several were very low and we have to figure out how the taxpayer can continue to afford to live within this community. Langworthy was appointed to the post of Sole Assessor in 2000, but his tenure in public service goes back over a decade further. Langworthy was appointed to the town zoning commission in 1988, and later served on the town planning board. In those roles, he was instrumental in helping develop and promote land use guidelines that have enhanced residents lifestyles and property values, according to board members who served with him. Discussion was held Wednesday to appoint a successor to Langworthy, and the board considered appointing Paul Maniacek, who serves as part-time assessor for several other area municipalities. However, discussion on the issue ended when Town Councilman Dean Ackley voiced a motion to advertise for a full-time assessor. There are 2,700 properties in the town of Warrensburg, and a full-time assessor would be better able to do the job, he said. The rest of the council concurred.

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