Assemblyman Andrew Raia (R,C,I,WF-East Northport) today voted in favor of legislation creating a personal income tax credit to help relieve homeowners from ever-increasing property tax burdens. The new legislation aims to resolve the divisive debate regarding the constitutionality of the property tax rebate measure recently vetoed by Gov. George Pataki and overridden by the Legislature.
“I am optimistic this new proposal can resolve some of the pressing issues regarding the constitutionality of the property tax relief plan that the governor vetoed. He has stated that he recognizes the need for property tax relief, but claimed the override was unconstitutional. We must provide relief, and I truly hope this measure will get the job done,” said Raia.
Assemblyman Raia said the new measure would provide an increased tax credit for senior citizens who are collecting or are eligible for the Enhanced School Tax Relief (STAR) program. Their incomes must be less than $67,850 per year to qualify.
Raia noted that the “School District Property Tax Credit” will vary depending on where you live and is equal to $9,000 multiplied by the 2004-05 school property tax rate. According to early estimates, the measure is projected to save the average non-senior Suffolk county property owner over $300 and $444 for seniors.
If signed into law by the governor, the measure passed today would make the state Department of Taxation and Finance responsible for sending property owners a claim form in the amount of the credit each taxpayer qualifies for by September 1. Taxpayers not wanting to claim the advance payment would be eligible for the same amount of credit when they file their personal income tax returns.