Ranzenhofer Calls on State Leaders to Reinstate STAR Rebate Program


Tonawanda and LeRoy, N.Y. – New York State Senator Mike Ranzenhofer called on Governor Paterson and State leaders to reinstate the STAR Property Tax Rebate checks in the 2009-2010 State budget today.

After tremendous pressure from the community and others across the State, the three Democratic leaders from New York City removed only $1.3 Billion in fees, leaving $5 billion in new fees and taxes still intact. The Governor and Democratic legislators have failed to reinstate the STAR rebate checks.

“Western New Yorkers already pay the highest property taxes in the nation. State leaders must reinstate the STAR Rebate checks to provide much needed property tax relief for homeowners now,” said Senator Ranzenhofer. “Eliminating the STAR rebate checks will take away $335 on average for middle-class homeowners and around $420 for seniors in property tax relief,” added Ranzenhofer.

Senator Ranzenhofer expressed the negative impact the elimination of the STAR Rebate checks would have on senior citizens and families. “Senior citizens and families often use the rebate checks not just to defray skyrocketing property taxes, but to off-set energy costs, college tuition, and other household expenses. Eliminating the rebate checks makes it harder for both families and senior citizens to make ends meet in these tough economic times. As the Ranking Member on Aging, our number one priority should be to keep senior in their homes,” said Senator Ranzenhofer.

“Governor Paterson’s plan to eliminate property tax rebate checks is an $80 million hit on the taxpayers of Erie County. It’s so important to restore the property tax rebates because they provide vital assistance to property taxpayers and can help stimulate the local economy,” added Senator Ranzenhofer.

Tonawanda resident Tony Lombardo supported Senator Ranzenhofer’s call on State leaders to reinstate the STAR rebate checks. “New York State continues to tax seniors out of their homes. Eliminating the STAR Program makes a bad situation even worse,” said Mr. Lombardo. “Senator Ranzenhofer understands our property tax burden.”

LeRoy residents David and Barb Parton supported Senator Ranzenhofer’s call on State leaders to reinstate the STAR Rebate checks. “Over the years, these rebate checks have allowed me to keep up with rising property taxes. We can’t afford to lose the STAR Program,” said Mr. Parton. “I am proud to have Senator Ranzenhofer leading the fight for property tax relief and the STAR program.”