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Senator Steve Saland Announces New Property Tax Relief Plan

 

Senator Steve Saland (R,I,C Poughkeepsie) today announced a new property tax relief plan being advanced in the New York State Senate.

The multi-billion dollar property tax relief plan would double the size of the current STAR rebate for most homeowners and triple the size of the STAR rebate for seniors next year, while abolishing the current income eligibility thresholds instituted last year by Governor Spitzer.

In addition to the new rebate plan, the NY-STOP proposal, could result in the complete elimination of residential school property taxes in school districts that vote to phase out property taxes over five years, and enact comprehensive mandate relief measures to help lower costs for school districts and municipalities. These two provisions were previously introduced by Senator Saland. The new proposal would also freeze property taxes for seniors and create a Blue Ribbon Property Tax Reform Commission.

"Escalating property values do not necessarily correspond to wealth," said Senator Saland. "The corresponding escalation of property taxes burdens the vast majority of hardworking real property tax payers. Seniors who bought their homes years ago, many on fixed or small retirement incomes now find they own a house with a value far in excess of what they paid, and are challenged to pay their burgeoning tax bill or are forced to sell their home. This simply cannot go on. Reforming our property tax system, especially school property taxes, is a necessity, especially for seniors and young adults trying to buy their first home in the Hudson Valley", Saland continued.

Escalating property values do not necessarily correspond to wealth," said Senator Saland. "The corresponding escalation of property taxes burdens the vast majority of hardworking real property tax payers. Seniors who bought their homes years ago, many on fixed or small retirement incomes now find they own a house with a value far in excess of what they paid, and are challenged to pay their burgeoning tax bill or are forced to sell their home. This simply cannot go on. Reforming our property tax system, especially school property taxes, is a necessity, especially for seniors and young adults trying to buy their first home in the Hudson Valley", Saland continued.

As the Chairman of the Senate Education Committee, Senator Saland previously introduced legislation, included in this proposal, to authorize local taxpayers to determine if school property taxes on primary residences should be phased out over five years, with the State picking up the costs. Another Saland measure included in this proposal would require the State to fully fund any mandated program imposed on municipalities or school districts by the State.

"I am gratified these two proposals I authored have been included in this important property tax reform and relief package. Taxpayers should have the opportunity to phase out school property taxes and schools and municipalities shouldn’t have to bear the costs of State mandates, which place an even larger burden on taxpayers. It is most definitely the time for the Governor and the Assembly to join us in making real property tax reform a priority in 2008," Saland concluded.