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Any activity, with a few specific exceptions, which will alter (1) a wetland area, (2) land within 100-feet of a wetland area, and/or (3) land within 200-feet of a perennial stream or river, known as the riverfront area (RFA) must obtain a permit from the Leominster Conservation Commission.
A great place to start is by typing in your address to the Leominster Web GIS. This shows many of the existing wetlands in Leominster. BE WARNED; if there are no wetlands indicated on the map, this does not necessarily mean there are no wetlands on site or that you do not require a permit from the conservation commission. Wetlands are dynamic and may expand or contract over time.
Depending on the project, you may need to submit a Request for Determination of Applicability (RDA) to formally determine the extent of nearby wetlands or hire a wetlands specialist to properly delineate a wetland boundary.
In any case, if you are unsure whether or not proposed work requires wetland permitting, please contact the Leominster Conservation Agent for an informal evaluation.
A Notice of Intent, or NOI, is an form submitted by an applicant wishing to do work in a wetland, wetland buffer, or riverfront area. The NOI includes a detailed description of the proposed work as well as plans to mitigate potential impacts on wetlands such as erosion and sedimentation controls. NOI are submitted to MassDEP and the local conservation commission. From there, a hearing is scheduled by the conservation commission where the applicant or their representative presents the NOI and addresses questions from the commission and the public.
Once the hearing is closed, the commission votes to approve or deny a permit known as an Order of Conditions.
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Personal property is "tangible" property. That means the property physically exists. Personal property is assets, goods and material objects used in the conduct of a business and is assessed separately from real estate.
The assessment date is January 1 of each year. Any business that existed on that date is subject to personal property tax and will be billed for the entire fiscal year. This applies to businesses that have closed or relocated after the assessment date. Personal property tax is not prorated per Massachusetts General Law.
All proprietors, partnerships, associations, trusts and corporations must file a Form of List (PDF) declaring items as personal property as of January 1 each calendar year. This is a state requirement.
The Form of List (PDF) is to be filed with the local Board of Assessors each year before March 1 to determine its fair market value. If the property has no permanent location (e.g. construction equipment), it must be listed with the assessors in the city or town where you are domiciled (legal place of residence).
Requests for an extension may be granted if you can show sufficient reason for not filing on time. The latest date the filing deadline can be extended is 30 days after the tax bills are mailed for the fiscal year. Request for extensions must be in writing.
Pursuant to Massachusetts General Law chapter 59, section 64, if no Form of List (PDF) was filed for the fiscal year, the assessor cannot grant abatement for overvaluation of personal property for the year. A Form of List is not considered filed unless it is complete.
If the Form of List is not filed on time, the assessor can only grant abatement if the taxpayer shows a reasonable excuse for late filing or if the tax assessed is more than 150% of the amount that would have been assessed if the Form of List was filed on time. In this case, only the amount over 150 percent of the correct value can be abated.
The Board of Assessors uses the information provided on the Form of List to determine the taxable or exempt status of your personal property as well as its fair market value. The assessors may also require you to provide in writing further information about the property and to permit them to inspect the property.
Note: Forms of List (PDF) are confidential and not open to public inspection.
The following summarizes personal property that must be listed on a Form of List (PDF). The type of business determines which assets will be taxed locally.
To be considered a corporation the business must be included in the Massachusetts Domestic and Foreign Corporations Book compiled by the Massachusetts Department of Revenue. Business corporations are taxable on poles, underground conduits, wires and pipes. They are also taxable on all machinery used in the conduct of business except:
Note: Machinery used to provide a service or produce a product for sale or to generate income is taxable. Example: A computer and printer used by a real estate company to generate and distribute information to a prospective client would be taxable.
Businesses that are classified by the Department of Revenue as "Manufacturing Corporations" and are listed as such in the Massachusetts Domestic and Foreign Corporation Book are not subject to personal property taxes. The Department of Revenue determines values on poles, underground conduits, wires and pipes for certain landline telecommunications carriers and for gas pipelines.
Property owners who feel that their personal property is overvalued or exempt may file for abatement. Please note that if no Form of List (PDF) was filed for the fiscal year, the assessor cannot grant abatement for overvaluation of personal property for the year. A Form of List (PDF) is not considered filed unless it is complete.
Abatement applications for personal property may be obtained only after the Third Quarter tax bill has been mailed, typically at the end of December. This application must be filed with the Board of Assessors by the due date of the Third Quarter tax bill (typically February 1). Information regarding appeals is also mailed with the Third Quarter bill.
Abatement filings and abatement amounts are public records. However, individual abatement applications are not public records.
The Assessing Department may require owners or lessees of personal property to provide certain information in writing as may be reasonable to determine actual fair cash valuation of the property. Failure to comply with the request within thirty days will bar any appeal of the tax assessed, unless the owners or lessees were unable to comply for reasons beyond their control. Any false statement that is knowingly made will also bar the taxpayers from any statutory appeal.
Requests for extension to file the Form of List (PDF) must be made in writing and approved by the Leominster Board of Assessors. Requests must be made 3 business days prior to deadline for submitting your return. No electronic requests for extension will be accepted.
The assessors look at a property the same way a potential buyer looks at a property. The assessors consider the factors that a potential buyer considers. Examples of important factors are the following: location, interior condition, house size, kitchen quality, and bath quality. The assessors examine many qualities and conditions and then look for comparable properties that have sold in the neighborhood. Since no two houses are identical, adjustments are made for differing characteristics to determine the assessment. Thus the assessment is an estimate of market value.
Market value changes occur in many forms. Buyers have different requirements and these requirements sometimes change from year to year. Also, sometimes renovations have been performed on a property that would cause a change in assessed value different from a similar property that did not undergo renovations. A recent inspection by the assessor's office also may have contributed to a change in assessed value. Perhaps the property had not been inspected in several years and the property information has now been updated to more accurately reflect the condition of the property.
The assessment is an estimate of market value. The definition of market value is the price a willing buyer would pay a willing seller in an open, competitive market, without any undue influences. The assessment represents the estimate of market value as of January 1, 2020 for Fiscal Year 2021. This estimate of market value is determined by examining sales of properties from calendar year 2019. Although the majority of properties are not for sale, Massachusetts General Laws requires an assessment, or an estimate of market value, on every property. Sales of similar or comparable properties within a neighborhood are the best indicator of market value.
Proposition 2 and a half limits the City of Leominster, and all other Massachusetts communities, the amount of citywide taxes that can be raised. Proposition 2 and a half limits a community to raising citywide taxes by 2.5 percent from the previous year's levy limit. Allowing for new growth can then increase this levy limit. New growth consists of property tax increases caused by new construction, renovations or land use changes. Proposition 2 and a half does not limit any individual property tax increase or decrease. For example, in Fiscal Year 2020, the Mayor and the City Council approved a budget that included a tax levy of $75,076,958. The levy limit for Fiscal Year 2020 was $80,298,856. So, the maximum amount of taxes that can be budgeted by the Mayor and City Council for Fiscal Year 2021 is $80,298,856 times 102.5 percent is $82,306,327 plus certified new growth. (The 102.5 percent number is increasing the previous year's limit by 2.5 percent). The new growth, which was certified by the Massachusetts Department of Revenue, is $1,139,963. Therefore, the maximum amount of taxes which can be levied for Fiscal Year 2021 is $80,298,856 plus $2,007,471 plus $1,139,963 is $83,446,290. This figure is the levy limit, which will be used to determine next year's maximum tax levy. A community may increase the property tax levy less than 2.5 percent, but that is a determination made by the budgetary requirements of the city as determined by the Mayor and the City Council. A community may not increase the tax levy greater than 2.5 percent without approval of the voters.
Proposition 2 and a half limits the amount of taxes a community can raise from property tax. The assessment is an estimate of market value. Since the real estate market changes are based upon the buyers' and sellers' needs, there is no limit to the amount an assessment can increase or decrease. Assessment changes are always based on the real estate market. For example, if a property sells for $500,000 in the calendar year 2019, there is no limit or minimum price it would sell for in the calendar year 2020 or beyond. It could sell for $600,000, $700,000, $1,000,000 or $400,000. The sale price would be based on the real estate market at that time. The assessments do not predict market value. The assessments reflect (or report) market value.
The assessment is an estimate of market value. The selling price of a property is not related to the age of the owner. The assessment cannot be lowered or raised based on the age of the owner. The assessments are a reflection of the real estate market. Elderly owners do not sell their properties for any lower or higher prices than the market will allow. If property owners throughout the city sell their homes for less, the assessments will decrease. If property owners sell their homes for more, the assessments will increase.
The assessment is an estimate of market value. The selling price of a property is not related to the age of the owner. The assessment cannot be lowered or raised based on the age of the owner. The assessments are a reflection of the real estate market. Young owners do not sell their properties for any lower or higher prices than the market will allow. If property owners throughout the city sell their homes for less, the assessments will decrease. If property owners sell their homes for more, the assessments will increase.
You do not have to allow the assessors into your home. We only request the inspection in order to be as fair and accurate as possible. However, if an assessor is denied entrance, property owners give up their ability to challenge the assessed value. It is impossible to question an assessment if a property owner refuses to allow the assessors a view of the entire property. In instances where the assessors do not get into a property, estimates are made about the condition of the interior of the property, the kitchen and bath qualities, and whether there is finished attic space and finished basement space.
As stated in Question 8, you do not have to allow the assessors into your home. We only request the inspection so we can be as fair and accurate as possible. Accurate assessments are based on accurate information. By allowing the assessors to view the interior and exterior of your property, your assessed value is based on accurate information. If a person does not allow the assessors to view the interior and exterior of a property, estimates are made about the condition of the interior of the property, the kitchen and bath qualities, and whether there is finished attic space and finished basement space. If the estimates are overstated, property owners may contact the assessor's office to arrange an interior and exterior inspection of their property.
Just as a potential buyer wants to see the interior and exterior of the property before determining a purchase price, the assessors want to see the interior and exterior of the property to make an accurate determination about the market value of the property. The interior information of a property is essential in determining the estimate of market value. Without the actual information, estimates of the interior information have to be made.
The assessed value represents the estimate of the market value of the property. The real estate market changes constantly. The assessment for the Fiscal Year 2021 represents the estimate of market value as of January 1, 2020. This estimate of market value is determined by examining sales of properties from the calendar year 2019. Although there may not have been any physical changes to the property, buyers may be paying more or less for properties than they were in previous years. The assessment changes reflect the changes in the purchase prices of similar homes in the neighborhood. The assessments do not predict market value. The assessments reflect (or report) market value. The real estate market can change dramatically from year to year. It is not limited to 1, 5, 10 or 25-year intervals. The buyers and sellers determine the market value of properties. The assessments reflect what the buyers and sellers are doing as of the assessment date.
The assessed value represents the estimate of the market value of the property. The real estate market changes constantly. The assessments change based on these changes in the real estate market. The assessments do not automatically go up or down every year. The assessed values in 2010 to 2013 went down because the buyers were paying less for properties than they were in previous years. The assessed values then remained relatively constant from the Fiscal Year 2013 to the Fiscal Year 2014 because the purchase prices remained constant in this period. The assessments have increased recently because of the increase in the real estate market. The changes in the assessment reflect the real estate sales from the appropriate time period. For the Fiscal Year 2021, it is the market value as of January 1, 2020. This Fiscal Year 2021 assessment is determined by examining sales of properties from the calendar year 2019.
The assessors do not raise or lower taxes. The assessors reflect (or report) market value. The tax increase or decrease is determined by the budgetary requirements of the Mayor and the City Council to run the city. Rising or falling assessed values do not mean rising or falling tax bills. The increase or decrease in taxes seen by the property owner is a direct result of the increase or decrease in the budget. The budget increase or decrease determines the tax increase or decrease. Individual property owners may see an increase in their assessments due to renovations, additions or improvements that would cause an increase in their tax liability. There may also be some shifting of tax liability among classes of property (residential, commercial, industrial, personal) based upon the overall increase or decrease in value of the particular class. The primary reason for a tax increase or decrease is based on the budget requirements of the Mayor and the City Council to fund city operations.
No. The valuation change will not be indicative of the tax change. There are two components that help determine the tax rate. The first is the budgetary requirements of the Mayor and the City Council to run the city. The second is the overall value of the property within the city. For example, if the budget increases 5 percent, then the tax increase throughout the city would be approximately 5 percent, regardless of what happened to the overall assessed values. For example, if the budget increased 5 percent and all the assessments in the city went up 20 percent, the average tax increase would still be 5 percent. The tax rate, which is calculated simply by dividing the budget by the value of property, would decrease approximately 15 percent. In another example, if the budget increased 5 percent and all the assessments went down 20 percent, the average tax increase would still be 5 percent. The tax rate, which is calculated simply by dividing the budget by the value of property, would increase approximately 25 percent.
The first step in comparing properties is to examine the factual components of each property. Many times properties that appear larger are in fact much smaller than people think. Quality characteristics should also be examined when making comparisons. For example, a property with a newer kitchen would sell for more than a property with a much older, unimproved kitchen with all other factors being comparable. Ultimately, the assessors have to determine if the assessment represents market value on the subject property and also if the assessed value on the neighbors' property represents market value. If a neighboring property is too low in relation to surrounding properties, the assessors cannot compound their low assessment by also lowering surrounding properties. The resolution may be that the assessors have to raise the neighboring property's assessed value to make it more in line with the surrounding properties. The most important criterion the assessors examine in an abatement request is the market value of the property of the person filing the abatement and the market value of any property that the person filing the abatement mentions on the application. For example, if there were 5 identical houses on a street and 4 were assessed for $500,000 and one was assessed for $100,000, and there were three sales on the street at $500,000 each, then the assessors could not lower the 4 properties to $100,000. Based upon the sales, the market value would be very close to $500,000. The correct action for the assessors would be to raise the property assessed for $100,000 to $500,000.
No. If there was a specific problem or circumstance about your property which warranted an abatement in the past, that information would remain on the property record until the issue was corrected. All subsequent assessments would be calculated based on the information that originally warranted the abatement. Many times people will file an abatement every year telling us they are located next to, for example, a gas station. We know the gas station is there every year and will take it into consideration when calculating new assessed values. You need not file every year.
An abatement is a reduction in a real estate valuation based on a correction to the assessed valuation. The assessed value has nothing to do with the age of the owner, the income of the owner or any other financial information about the owner. The assessment represents an estimate of market value. An elderly exemption is a reduction in a real estate tax due based on certain age and income requirements set forth by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. An individual who files for an abatement of real estate valuation because of age and/or income has filed the wrong form. Instead, that individual should file for an elderly exemption. The only factor the assessors examine on an abatement application is the market value of the property. Age and/or income do not factor into assessment determination. (Please refer to Questions 6 and 7)
Market value changes occur in many forms. Buyers have different requirements and these requirements sometimes change from year to year. Also, sometimes renovations have been performed on a property that would cause a change in assessed value different from a similar property that did not have renovations. A recent inspection by the assessor's office also may have contributed to a change in assessed value. Perhaps the property had not been inspected in several years and the property information has now been updated to more accurately reflect the condition of the property. Historical trends are just historical information. Properties change over time, as do market values. Just because a property was assessed less than a neighboring property in 1973 does not mean the property will always be assessed less than the neighboring property. Renovations, additions, disrepair, fire, and other factors can also change historical relationships.
Assessments reflect what has occurred in the real estate market. In Leominster, single-family properties in the past 5 to 10 years have sold for more than similarly sized two-family properties in the same neighborhood. Most buyers in Leominster do not want to be landlords. The typical buyer in Leominster prefers a single-family and the sales prices over the past 5 to 10 years bear out this fact. A single-family property cannot be compared to a two-family any more than it can be compared to a condominium. Comparisons should be made between similar uses of properties. The difference in selling prices between a single-family and a two-family property has closed significantly in the last 5 calendar years, with the sale price of two-family dwellings increasing at a much faster rate than the single-family property. Two-family properties have become more popular with new homebuyers because of the ability of a tenant to contribute to the owner's mortgage obligation. The two-family property is also priced slightly less than a comparable single-family property.
No. If the property is three times larger than your property, it would not be considered comparable to yours. For example, if your property is a 1,500 square foot home, assessed for $100,000, and up the street a 4,500 square foot home sold for $250,000, it would not be considered comparable to your property and this sale would not impact your assessment. Assessments are based on comparable sales. Even if a 1,500 square foot home sold next door for $200,000, one sale would not impact your assessment. However, for example, if a few sales of 1,500 square foot homes sold for $200,000, then the market value of a 1,500 square foot home in that neighborhood would be close to $200,000. You should expect a change in future assessments because of the apparent change in market value. In this example where there were multiple sales of 1,500 square foot homes for $200,000, it appears the market value of the 1,500 square foot home is no longer $100,000.
Typically, larger properties sell for more than smaller properties with all other factors being equal. If an addition is put on a home, the house becomes larger and generally the market value of the property increases. The assessors would then have to see what similarly sized properties were selling for in the neighborhood. Historical sales have indicated that larger homes sell for more than smaller homes with all other factors being equal. Since the assessed value is an estimate of market value, it is highly likely that the assessed value of your property will increase once the addition is put on the property.
Legally, the assessors must retain the owner of record as of January 1, 2013 for Fiscal Year 2014. If you purchased the property after January 1, 2013, by law we will carry both your name and the legal owner as of January 1, 2013. For Fiscal Year 2015, the legal owner as of January 1, 2014 will be maintained. This is when the prior owner would be removed and your name would be the only name appearing on the ownership record.
Typically, the home is the single largest investment most people make. The assessment reflects the market value of this asset. People often associate rising assessments with rising taxes. However, this is not the case. Rising budgets cause rising taxes. If the budget increases, typically tax increases. If the budget decreases, typically tax decreases. The assessed value represents the market value of the property. If all the assessments went down 25% and the budget increased, taxes would still increase. The budget is the driving force behind rising taxes. If the assessed value of a property increases, this generally increases the property owner's equity in the property. Although many property owners are not selling their homes, and increased asset value is usually received as welcome news. Most people understand tax increases are not caused by assessment increases. They understand that increased spending causes rising tax bills. The majority of property owners are glad to hear their home is increasing in value, even if they are not currently selling their property.
Assessments reflect the property condition and market value of the property on January 1 of the prior year. If, for example, your neighbors took out a building permit in December, and the construction work was not started until after January 1, the change in the market value of the property would not be reflected in the assessment until the following fiscal year. Sometimes, when there is a large construction project, it can take several years for the entire project's market value to be reflected in the assessment. Each year the assessors would determine how much the market value of your neighbor's home increased, based on how far along the construction was on January 1.
The Leominster City Council complied with a directive from the Commonwealth of Massachusetts to issue a supplemental tax bill to property owners whose property had construction resulting in an increase in market value (assessment) of more than 50 percent. This provision is triggered by the issuance of an occupancy permit and an increase in market value of more than 50 percent. The assessors analyze all properties with occupancy permits to determine if the construction added more than 50 percent to the fair market value of the property. If the construction added more than 50 percent to the fair market value of the property, then a supplemental tax bill is issued. The supplemental tax is based on the difference between the original market value and the new market value, multiplied by the tax rate and prorated from the date of the occupancy permit to the end of the fiscal year. In certain instances, a property owner could receive a supplemental tax bill for the prior fiscal year as well as the current fiscal year, depending on the date of the occupancy permit.
Membership in the Leominster Contributory Retirement System is a statutory requirement for all employees who work a minimum of 20 hours per week on a permanent basis. Only elected officials have the option of whether or not to join the System.
The amount a member contributes each year is a set statute, and it is determined by the date of your membership into the System. If you became a member prior to January 1, 1975, your contribution rate is 5%. If your membership date was January 1, 1975 to December 31, 1983, your contribution rate is 7%. From January 1, 1984 to June 30, 1996, the contribution rate is 8%. For anyone who enters the System after June 30, 1996, the contribution rate is 9%. In addition to these contributions, any member who enters the System on or after January 1, 1979, must contribute an additional 2% of their salary in excess of $30,000.
Once you become a member of the Retirement System, an Annuity Savings Account is established on your behalf. All of your contributions are deposited into your account. Your contributions, plus any accumulated interest, are credited directly to your account. Each year, the Board issues a statement to all of its active members that reflects the yearly and the total contributions, along with the interest credited to your account.
No. Under State Law, your retirement account has no provisions for withdrawal under any circumstances.
You may receive a refund of your total contributions if you officially resign from your position with the City and it is not your intention to accept another position of employment that requires membership in another Massachusetts Retirement System. If you voluntarily leave employment that began after January 1, 1984 and have less than five years of service, no interest will be refunded to you.
If you have served between five and ten years of service, you will receive half of the interest. If you have over ten years of service, all of the interest will be refunded to you. It is important to note that if you do receive a refund or your retirement contributions, we are required to withhold 20% of your federal tax liability. Alternatively, you can have the entire retirement contribution "Rollover" into a tax-qualified Individual Retirement Account (IRA).
You are eligible to retire at the age of 55 or older if you have at least ten years of creditable service. If you have 20 years of service, you can retire at any age.
Because the Leominster Contributory Retirement Board is a defined benefit plan, your benefits are determined by a formula. The factors used to determine your benefits are: your age at the time of retirement, your amount of creditable service, your group classification and an average of your three highest consecutive years of regular compensation.
The maximum benefit you can receive is 80% of your three highest consecutive years of regular compensation.
If you are a veteran as defined in the Massachusetts General Laws, a veteran's credit will be added to your retirement allowance. The amount of credit will be equal to $15 per year for each year of creditable service you have accrued, not to exceed 20 years or $300. You will receive this additional benefit even if you are already at the maximum, or if the additional $300 puts your total allowance over the 80% maximum.
Vested is a term commonly used to signify the right to a retirement allowance at a later date. Vested benefits are those benefits that a member is entitled to today, not based on additional service. You are vested in the Leominster Contributory Retirement Board once you have accumulated the equivalent of 10 years of full time service.
If you were a member of another retirement system subject to the provisions of Chapter 32 of Massachusetts General Laws, and you withdrew your retirement funds, it is possible to buy back your prior creditable service. The Retirement Office where you previously were a member will verify your prior service, then calculate the amount of your buyback. You must repay the amount withdrawn, plus interest to the date of repayment. You may complete a buyback as a lump sum payment or a payment plan up to the number of years you wish to buy back may be set up.
If you have retirement contributions from a previous public employer directly transferred to our System, you are entitled to maintain the level of contribution you were paying in your previous employment. If you have received a refund of your retirement contributions from your previous retirement system and later became a member of the Leominster Contributory Retirement Board, your contribution rate will be at the new member rate, regardless of what you were paying in the prior system. If you should later purchase your prior service through a buy back, your contribution level will remain at the new member rate and will not be reduced to your previous rate.
You earn creditable service towards your retirement allowance for the period during which you are contributing to the retirement system. For members of the System who work 20 or more hours per week on a permanent basis service time starts accruing the day you begin work and continues until the day you separate from service.
No. Regular compensation is the portion of your salary that is subject to retirement contributions. Overtime, bonus pay, severance pay, payments made for unused sick time and certain other payments are not considered regular compensation, are not subject to retirement and can not be used towards your three year average for the purpose of determining your retirement allowance.
If you leave your job and are not going to work for another Government unit which comes under the provisions of Chapter 32, you may be eligible to receive a refund of your contributions. If you are leaving to accept another position with a Massachusetts political subdivision subject to Chapter 32, then you must transfer your retirement contributions directly to your new retirement system.
No. You may request a refund of your funds at any time after termination. If you leave your funds on deposit, however, and later seek a refund, your deductions will only earn interest for two years after your termination date.
Any member who terminates employment may be eligible to withdraw their retirement funds. If the member is vested and has earned the right to a retirement allowance at a later date, careful consideration should be given to the value of the retirement benefit he/she may be forfeiting in exchange for a refund.
If you are vested and terminate employment, you can choose to "defer" your retirement by leaving your money in the system until you are ready to retire.
Your contribution and any interest that you receive from your account are subject to federal tax income (with exception of any contribution made prior to January 12, 1988). When processing a refund of your retirement contributions the Retirement Office is required to withhold 20% of the taxable portion of your refund for federal tax. The 20% tax payment is required only if the refund is made directly to the member. To defer tax payments, you must make a direct rollover of your retirement funds to an Individual Retirement Account (IRA), or another type of retirement account with a financial institution. With a direct rollover, no tax is withheld and the entire portion of your refund is transferred. If you have both taxable and nontaxable contributions you may accept receipt of the nontaxable refund without tax consequence and the taxable portion maybe rolled over.
If you are married and die before you retire, your surviving spouse will have the option of collecting a monthly benefit, including a monthly allowance for any children under the age of 18 or if a student is in an institution until the age of 22, or receive a lump sum payment of your contributions. Contact the Leominster Contributory Retirement Board Office at 978-534-7507, ext. 246 for more information.
Yes, I'm still alive! Please continue to send or deposit my monthly benefit check.
Annually every retiree and survivor receiving a monthly benefit check from the Leominster Contributory Retirement Board will receive an "Annual Verification Statement" form. Each retiree/survivor must complete this form, sign and return the form to our office promptly. If this form is returned to our office by mail or delivered by someone other than the named individual, the Retiree's/Survivor's signature must be notarized by a Notary Public. If the retiree/survivor delivers the form in person, a member of our staff will gladly accept this form from them.
Failure to return the "Annual Verification Statement" in the time allotted may result in a suspension of your retirement benefits.
Please call the Leominster Contributory Retirement Office at 978-534-7507, ext. 246 if you have any questions.
As a Massachusetts Public Employment Retiree, there are some restrictions on post-retirement employment for any and all Massachusetts Public Employees (including all cities, towns, public schools, fire / water or health districts, housing authorities, state agencies, state colleges and universities). Restrictions also apply to federal grant funded positions with a Massachusetts Public Employer.
Public sector employment for retirees is limited to both aggregated hours and earnings per calendar year. Hours of compensated work are limited to an aggregate of 960 hours per calendar year. Earnings are limited to the difference between your retirement allowance and the compensation paid for the position you retired from. (For example, if the position you retired from currently pays $30,000 and your retirement allowance is $20,000, you are limited to the difference - $10,000 of earnings - from public sector employment is what you can earn per calendar year). The rationale: as a public sector retiree, you cannot be compensated (from public funds) more than you would have received had you continued working in the position from which you retired. You must cease all public employment when either limit is reached. If you exceed either limitation, you will be subject to reimbursement of all compensation in excess of limits or you must waive receipt of your retirement allowance for the period of re-employment with any public sector employer.
The option you chose when you retire determines the benefit available for your named beneficiary. Please advise your family or other beneficiary that benefits may be available to them and to notify the Leominster Contributory Retirement Board upon your death. They will need to provide us with a copy of your death certificate for us to appropriately payout benefits to them.
If you retired after January 12, 1988 and chose Option C benefit at retirement and your named beneficiary predeceases you, you will be eligible for an increased benefit (Pop-Up) equivalent to Option A calculations. In such a case you will need to notify us and provide us with a copy of your beneficiary's death certificate. Upon notification and receipt of the death certificate, we will adjust your allowance retroactive to the date of your beneficiary's death.
If you chose either Option A or Option B at retirement you may change your beneficiary at any time by completing and submitting a "Change of Beneficiary" form to our office. It is important to note a specific form that can be obtained from the Leominster Contributory Retirement Board is required to change a beneficiary. No change will take effect unless that form is received by our office.
It is also important to keep us informed of changes in addresses for your beneficiary in the event we need to contact them upon your death. To change a beneficiary's address a specific form is not required, simply call or write to the Leominster Contributory Retirement Board, 25 West Street, Room 15, Leominster, MA 01453.
Benefits that you may receive from Social Security may be offset by the pension that you receive from the Leominster Contributory Retirement Board (which is a Government Pension Plan). The amount of offset is determined by Social Security. While you do not need to report your Social Security benefits to us, you do need to report all benefits you receive from us to Social Security. If you are subject to offset by Social Security, you must report all changes in benefits (i.e. COLA increases) to Social Security. Further information is available on the Social Security Administration website.
Stormwater is water that runs off impervious surfaces such as rooftops, paved roads, driveways, and parking lots. Stormwater carries sediment and surface pollutants such as petroleum products, litter/trash, phosphorus, and nitrogen. Stormwater is washed down by storm drains and the vast drain piping network carries the stormwater into one of the many brooks or ponds in the City.
Stormwater can pick up debris, chemicals, dirt, and other pollutants and flow into a storm sewer system or directly to a lake, stream, river, wetland, or coastal water. Anything that enters a storm sewer system is discharged untreated into the waterbodies we use for swimming, fishing, and providing drinking water.
Pet waste is a key contributor to water quality problems. When pet waste is left on sidewalks and lawns, it is carried into nearby rivers, lakes, and streams when it rains, polluting the water and creating a health hazard for people.
If you would like to check the status of a vendor payment, you must contact the city department that you provided the goods or services to. They can tell you when they placed the bill on warrant, the warrant number and the amount to be paid. The Treasurer's office can tell you when the checks on a particular warrant were mailed and if a check is outstanding or not.
Contact the Treasurer's office for a replacement check. We will need the vendor name, check amount and warrant number. The Treasurer's office will place a stop payment on the original check and reissue it. We cannot reissue a check until the stop payment confirmation is received from the bank.
If you find a check that is more than 90 days old, please call the Treasurer's office at 978-534-7500, ext. 1172 to see if the check is still valid.
Contact the City Comptroller's office at 978-534-7500, ext. 3534.
If you have been underpaid or overpaid, please contact the department that you provided goods or services to.
There are two ways to qualify for a property tax exemption.
Please contact John Harman for additional information.
Please go online or call 978-537-2303 and leave a message and someone will return your call. Please do not call the Leominster Veterans Services office, as we do not book the hall.
We recommend that you do not donate to any Veterans Charity that calls your home. Traditionally, those organizations give very little to the veterans they say they are supporting. The best value for your dollar is to donate locally. All of our Veterans groups are all volunteers and there is no "overhead".
You may qualify if you are considered a Veteran under Massachusetts General Law. Contact the office for more details. 978 534 7538
Bills are issued on a quarterly basis. You should receive four bills per year, approximately every three months.
The consumption dates (previous read date to current read date) are listed on the front of your bill.
Please contact the Department of Public Works at 978-534-7500, ext. 3637.
The current water rate is $4.15 per unit (750 gallons). The current sewer rate is $4.70 per unit based on water usage. This is the basic rate for Leominster residents. These rates and others are listed on the back of your bill.
Interest accrues daily at a rate of 14 percent per annum from the due date of the bill to the date of payment. If a prior payment was received late, the interest charge will appear on your next bill.
Demand bills are mailed once per year on any balance exceeding 90 days. If this balance is not paid by the demand due date, a lien will be placed on your Real Estate tax bill equal to the unpaid balance.
Water bills can vary in amount from quarter to quarter due to various reasons. Seasonal use, consumption and possible leaks are some of the circumstances that may affect your bill. If you have questions about usage, please call the Department of Public Works at 978-534-7500, ext. 3637.
A final water reading should be turned into the Department of Public Works. Your real estate agent should send this in prior to your closing. If you need the Final Water Reading Form, please go to the Public Works home page and scroll down to the Homepage Notes Section.
Typically, the final usage charges are settled at your closing. Refer to your settlement sheet to insure you were credited for water / sewer charges. If not, you should contact your closing attorney.