NYS Seal


(Oral Testimony by Invitation Only)


Real Property Tax Budget Implementation Hearing focusing on New York State's School Tax Relief (STAR) program and Middle Class STAR Rebate program.


To determine the effectiveness of New York State's School Tax Relief (STAR) and Middle Class STAR Rebate programs in providing property tax relief to New York State homeowners and to discuss possible alternatives.

December 10, 2008
1:00 pm
Chancellor's Hall
New York State Education Building
89 Washington Avenue (Entrance on Hawk Street)

In 1997, the STAR program was enacted to address New York State's high property tax burden. In 2006, a property tax rebate initiative was undertaken to supplement STAR; however, it received criticism from advocacy groups believing the rebate should target property owners of low and middle incomes. In response, the Middle Class STAR Rebate, which bases an individual's rebate amount on a sliding scale relative to the owner's income, was enacted in 2007.

This public hearing is a forum to address the effectiveness and sustainability of the STAR program and the Middle Class STAR Rebate Program. It will also provide an opportunity to discuss alternatives to these programs such as the adoption of a circuit breaker property tax relief plan.

Persons wishing to submit pertinent written testimony to the Committee at the above hearing should complete and return the enclosed reply form as soon as possible. It is important that the reply form be fully completed and returned so that persons may be notified in the event of emergency postponement or cancellation.

Oral testimony will be accepted by invitation only and is limited to ten minutes duration. In preparing the order of witnesses, the Committee will attempt to accommodate individual requests to speak at particular times in view of special circumstances. These requests should be made on the attached reply form or communicated to Committee staff as early as possible. In the absence of a request, witnesses will be scheduled in the order in which reply forms are postmarked.

Ten copies of any prepared testimony should be submitted at the hearing registration desk. The Committee would appreciate advance receipt of prepared statements.

In order to further publicize these hearings, please inform interested parties and organizations of the Committees' interest in hearing testimony from all sources.

In order to meet the needs of those who may have a disability, the Assembly, in accordance with its policy of non-discrimination on the basis of disability, as well as the 1990 Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), has made its facilities and services available to all individuals with disabilities. For individuals with disabilities, accommodations will be provided, upon reasonable request, to afford such individuals access and admission to Assembly facilities and activities.

Sandra Galef
Member of Assembly
Committee on Real Property Taxation


  1. How successful have the STAR and Middle Class STAR Rebate programs been in providing tax relief to New York State homeowners? Are there legislative and/or administrative changes that should be implemented to make these programs more effective? If so, what changes or alternative programs might be more successful?

  2. Are there legislative and/or administrative changes that should be implemented to make the STAR and Middle Class STAR Rebate programs more efficient?

  3. Are the STAR and Middle Class STAR Rebate programs sustainable forms of real property tax relief and should they be continued? Why or why not?

  4. What problems were encountered during the process of administering the STAR program and the Middle Class STAR Rebate program in the year 2008, and have they been resolved?

  5. There are several proposals to modify the real property tax circuit breaker which would enhance eligibility requirements as well as increase the allowable credit. One of these proposals, A.11838, passed the Assembly in August of this year. Would a real property tax circuit breaker be a more efficient and effective mean of providing real property tax relief? What recommendations would you propose to the real property tax circuit breaker to ensure that it provides property tax relief to middle and lower income property owners? Should a real property tax circuit breaker supplement, or replace, the current STAR and Middle Class STAR Rebate programs?


Persons wishing to present testimony at the public hearing on Real Property Taxation are requested to complete this reply form by November 30, 2008 and mail it to:

Lauren M. Denison
Real Property Taxation Committee
Room 520
Capitol Building
Albany, New York 12248
Phone: (518) 455-4363
Fax: (518) 455-5182

box I plan to attend the Real Property Taxation public hearing on December 10, 2008.

box I have been invited to make a public statement at the hearing. My statement will be limited to ten minutes, and I will answer any questions which may arise. I will provide 10 copies of my prepared statement.

box I will address my remarks to the following subjects:

box I do not plan to attend the above hearing.

box I would like to be added to the Committee mailing list for notices and reports.

box I would like to be removed from the Committee mailing list.


I will require assistance and/or handicapped accessibility information. Please specify the type of assistance required:








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