Forest Hills, NY— Senator Toby Ann Stavisky (D-Eastern Queens) and Council Member Karen Koslowitz (D-Forest Hills) are proud to announce a dramatic increase in the number of seniors who will be eligible for the Senior Citizen Rent Increase Exemption (SCRIE).
The benefit applies to seniors over 62 if their apartment is rent regulated (rent stabilized, controlled, Mitchell-Lama), and if they are on the lease and if their current rent or the rent they will pay with their new lease renewal is at least 1/3 of their income.
This year’s budget raises the income cap from $29,000 or less to up to $50,000 or less starting July 1, 2014.
This is the first increase of the income cap since 2009 and the change is expected to cover 10,000 more seniors.
“This tax relief for seniors is long overdue,” said Senator Stavisky. “Seniors, many of whom are living on a fixed income, have been victims of Albany’s inaction for nearly five years now. Under the new budget, thousands of New Yorkers will finally get the tax relief they deserve. I thank my colleagues for their dedication to this important issue and hope that together we can protect the interests of seniors and prevent an oversight like this from happening again.”
“For thousands of senior New Yorkers, the ratio of rent to income is unsustainable. Raising the SCRIE income threshold to $50,000 will enable many seniors to remain in their homes and have additional available income for such necessities as food and medical care. I applaud the Governor and the state legislature for their action on this critical issue,” said Council Member Koslowitz.
"After years of fighting for a fair and realistic cost of living adjustment to SCRIE eligibility requirements, I am thrilled that the 2014 State Budget will incorporate significant reform to the program," Assemblyman Andrew Hevesi (D-Forest Hills) said. "These changes will help protect thousands of New York's senior citizens each year that must live with the constant worry of how small fluctuations in their income may affect their ability to afford housing. I congratulate my colleagues and all of the advocates that have worked so hard over the years for this victory."