Middle Class STAR Rebate Program

Legislative Column by Assemblyman Fred Thiele, Jr.
July 28, 2008
The New York State Department of Taxation and Finance has just released information on the 2008 Middle Class STAR rebate program. In a time when our economy is hurting, I am happy to be able to provide information on a program that will help alleviate some of the stress on your wallets. As in previous years, the STAR rebate program will again provide an additional savings to the STAR exemption that many property owners already receive. Homeowners will fall under one of two parts of the STAR program; Basic STAR or Enhanced STAR, which is for seniors who meet income eligibility criteria.

Basic STAR recipients who applied for rebates in 2007 and whose property remains the same do not have to apply again this year. Property owners who did not apply in 2007 or whose property has changed can apply by one of two ways: one way is to mail in the application that the Department of Taxation and Finance mails out to all homeowners, or fill out an online application located on their Web site at www.nystax.gov. The deadline to apply this year is December 31, 2008 and if you are submitting a request for reconsideration of a rebate, that must by submitted by March 31, 2009. Taxation and Finance strongly encourages recipients to apply only once because additional applications will only cause a lag in the receipt of your rebate. Once you submit your application, you should expect your rebate check between September 29 and October 31, 2008. For the majority of homeowners, the Basic STAR rebate checks will be the same as last year.

Enhanced STAR recipients will, once again, receive their rebates automatically and do not have to fill out an application. If you received the Enhanced STAR benefit on your school tax bills, then you will receive a rebate check. All Enhanced STAR rebates will be mailed by October 31 and will be approximately 40 percent higher than the 2007 checks.

If you have any questions or concerns regarding either Basic or Enhanced STAR, you can visit the Department of Taxation and Finance Web site at www.nystax.gov, or you can contact me at my district office by calling (631) 537-2583 or by e-mail at thielef@assembly.state.ny.us.