Town wants taxes from Watchtower real estate

Hampton Inn, Newburgh

In March 2014, Jehovah’s Witness Report ran a story about the Hampton Inn purchased in Newburgh, New York State by the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society. The purpose of this acquisition and other local real estate property purchases is to house volunteers who work at the world HQ. One local resident said at the time of purchase:

It would help if these towns would stop the tax exempt statuses of these places to give the rest of us a break. We live in Orange Co. and pay quite a bit here too for our school taxes. I can see giving a ‘religious’ place an acre or two for their church/temple & parsonage, but the acreage they have is unreal.

It seems that Newburgh Town Council is also concerned about lost revenue and so the Council is introducing changes that may make the purchase of local motels and hotels less attractive to the tax exempt Watchtower Society. The Council is attempting to introduce a definition that will require such properties as the Hampton Inn

to be open only to the public on a fee basis for transient stays of 30 days or less.

The reports that the original purchase price for the Hampton Inn “was not disclosed, but county records listed the 5-acre hotel property’s market value at $6,438,800 for 2014.”

The words of the local town Supervisor may indicate that the tax-exempt Watchtower Society is not welcome to buy up more property in Newburgh because of the strain this is putting on the town coffers.

“It’s tough to run a town when you’re taking prime real estate off the tax rolls,” Supervisor Gil Piaquadio said.

“To run this town, you do need income,” Piaquadio said. “You can’t just keep raising taxes.”

The proposed zoning change is being reviewed by the county officials. If it gets approval it will not affect existing hotel and motel properties, the reports.

More information

Town of Newburgh Council Link – Newburgh seeks new hotel zoning definitions Link


About Susannah

"Susannah," JWReport's News and Opinion Editor, is very familiar with the Watchtower Society and its leaders past and present. An experienced editor and writer, she was born and raised in the UK where she was an active Jehovah's Witness until she was 28. She now lives and works in southern Europe.


Town wants taxes from Watchtower real estate — 2 Comments

  1. JW are governed by the Watchtower, do not listen to them. They will destroy your lives, just as they have destroyed my marriage.

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