All New York State residents who own their own homes can significantly reduce their school property taxes through a School Tax Reduction (STAR) exemption, regardless of age or income. But the savings is not automatic.
Typically, you have to apply with your town assessor's office by March 1 to be eligible for the tax break – and seniors who apply for the enhanced exemption must reapply each year.
New legislation, however, now requires all homeowners receiving a Basic STAR school tax exemption to register (or re-register) with the New York State Tax Department by Dec. 31, 2013 in order to receive the exemption in 2014 and subsequent years. This did NOT affect the September 2013 school tax bill but will affect future tax bills.
This is part of a new initiative to protect New Yorkers against inappropriate or fraudulent STAR exemptions.
To find your BASIC STAR exemption, go the New York State Tax Department to locate your individual tax savings. http://www.tax.ny.gov/pit/property/star/max_index.htm
Enhanced STAR recipients, who must confirm their age and income qualifications, re-register every year are not affected by this new requirement.
Resident homeowners who currently receive the Basic STAR exemption must re-register with the New York State Tax Department by December 31, 2013 in order to receive the exemption in 2014 and subsequent years.
Homeowners do not need to re-register every year. Based on the information provided in the registration process, the Tax Department will confirm homeowners’ eligibility in future years.
All homeowners in this part of New York will receive a letter in the mail between Sept. 3 and 6 about re-registering to continue the STAR exemption in 2014 and beyond.
You can re-register on-line by going to the state Department of Taxation and Finance website, searching for your STAR code and completing the process. http://www.tax.ny.gov/pit/property/star13/default.htm
The STAR (School Tax Relief) program is a state program that the district has no control over. The New York State STAR program is intended to be solely a state tax relief program—NOT state aid for education.
It is important for all taxpayers in New York State to
understand how the STAR program works, because by taking
advantage of it property owners can save hundreds of dollars a
year on their school taxes. Learn more about registering for