Senator Bill Larkin (R-C, Cornwall-on-Hudson) today announced a plan to double the size of direct property tax rebate checks for senior citizen homeowners.
The Senate is introducing a bill that would return about $200 million to senior citizens. Funds for the increased senior rebate checks would come from higher-than-projected State revenues realized at end of the 2006-07 state fiscal year.
Last year, Orange County seniors received rebate checks in the amount of approximately $337. This year, they are scheduled to receive $371 . The current Senate plan would increase the rebate check for Orange County seniors to $674.
In Ulster County last year, seniors received rebate checks in the amount of approximately $260. This year, they are scheduled to receive $294. The current Senate plan would increase the rebate check for Ulster County seniors to $520.
"My number one goal during this legislative session is to reduce property taxes for hardworking taxpayers and especially for senior citizens who are living on fixed incomes," said Senator Larkin. "We were successful in doing that in this year’s state budget, however, the Senate still wants to double the size of the property tax rebate checks for senior citizens."
The Senate budget proposed tripling property tax rebate checks for all homeowners, including seniors. However, during budget negotiations, the Governor insisted that funds for rebate checks be reduced by $200 million and, as a result, senior citizens did not receive an increase in property tax rebates in the final budget.
The adopted budget included $1.3 billion for additional property tax relief which doubled the size of rebate checks for the average homeowner, but not for seniors.
"There is no reason we can’t use the additional revenue we have from last year to give seniors additional property tax relief so that they can continue to stay in their homes and in New York," said Senator Larkin.