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TAX ABATEMENTS EYED FOR WORK ON HOMES

In an effort to help improve some of the city's aging houses, the Jamestown City Council is considering a proposal to offer tax abatements to homeowners who make major improvements to their properties.

The plan was drafted by Council Members Charles Nazzaro, D-at large, and Vincent Joy Jr., D-Ward I.

"If an individual adds on to their home and if the project is at least $3,000 and under $80,000, the city can elect by a local law to phase in the tax assessment over an eight-year period," Nazzaro said.

"This is not for minor projects like vinyl siding or a new roof, or ordinary repairs. This is for the people who have growing families and who may be deciding whether to add on to their existing home or look for a new home. We want to entice them to stay in Jamestown," he added.

Nazzaro said a separate part of the plan would cover new home construction, although the city would have to seek home-rule legislation from the state for that move. Just one new home was built in the city in 1997. Four houses were built in 1996, but two of them were never finished.

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