Senator Flanagan Reminds Homeowners To Apply For STAR Program Before March 1st Deadline

John J. Flanagan

February 17, 2012

Senator John Flanagan (2nd Senate District) is urging all homeowners in Suffolk County to remember to register for the School Tax Relief (STAR) program prior to the upcoming March 1ST deadline.  Homeowners who have not yet signed up for the STAR program are able to sign up until March 1st through their local assessor’s office to take advantage of this program.

The program has two components to help everyone eligible get the tax relief they are entitled to:

Basic STAR is open to all whose combined income is $500,000 and under and who own their own one, two or three family home, condominium, cooperative apartment or mobile home.  This property tax relief is available regardless of age or income and does not have to be renewed on an annual basis.

Enhanced STAR is designed to better assist property owners who are 65 and above with an annual income level of $79,050 or less.  If the property is owned jointly by siblings or a married couple, only one of the owners must be 65 or above but the combined income level still must remain at or below the $79,050 threshold.

To be approved for Enhanced STAR, those who meet the criteria must file income verification forms with their town assessor’s office.  If approved, annual renewal is required unless a property owner opts to sign up for the state’s Income Verification Program, which allows the assessor to automatically verify your income annually through the New York State Department of Tax and Finance.

The STAR exemption applies only to primary residences and is only applicable to one address regardless of age or income.

The STAR program was initially created in New York State to assist senior citizens by offsetting the escalating cost of school property taxes.  In 2000, the state extended the program to provide tax relief to all property owners by introducing the Basic STAR program and establishing the Enhanced STAR program for senior citizens.

“The STAR program has consistently delivered tax relief to the homeowners of New York State.  I urge everyone who owns a home but is not yet enrolled in this program to apply as soon as possible,” stated Senator Flanagan.  “This is money that our residents are entitled to and that they deserve.”

For more information regarding the STAR program and links to applications, please click here.