Tax Department Launches Statewide STAR Registration
New enacted legislation requires all homeowners receiving a Basic STAR exemption to register with the New York State Tax Department in order to receive the exemption in 2014 and subsequent years. Official press release here [PDF].
The New York State Tax Department today unveiled an easy, fast and secure online STAR Registration platform for homeowners currently receiving the Basic STAR property tax exemption. The system will facilitate Governor Cuomo’s 2013-14 Budget initiative to save New York taxpayers millions by eliminating inappropriate STAR property tax exemptions.
The STAR Program provides 2.6 million homeowners with savings on their school property tax bills each year, but is only available for an individual’s or family’s primary residence. The Governor’s initiative follows a Tax Department investigation that showed some homeowners were receiving the exemption on more than one property. Homeowners will not have to re-register every year – based on the information provided in the registration process, the Tax Department will monitor homeowners’ eligibility in future years.
Easy Registration Online or by Phone
- The Tax Department is mailing letters to all 2.6 million Basic STAR recipients. Mailing to Columbia County taxpayers is scheduled during the week of September 3 to September 9. The letter includes registration instructions for the Department’s online application as well as a specific code in order to register.
- It also provides homeowners with a telephone number for registration or questions – 518-457-2036.
- The deadline for completing the registration is December 31, 2013.
- Columbia County homeowners that received the BASIC STAR exemption on the 2013 Final Assessment Roll/2013 School Tax Bill will receive a mailing from the NYS Dept. of Tax & Finance within the first two weeks of September. It was stated in a webinar that I participated in that the mailings for our region would begin September 3rd – 6th.
- The mailing will include a STAR CODE that homeowners will need to register.
- Homeowners are required to register online by going to www.tax.ny.gov or if they are unable to register online they are to call 518-457-2036 to register by phone. This phone line will be covered M-F 8:30am-8:00pm & Sat. 9am-1pm. If the homeowner received a BASIC STAR exemption on their 2013 School Tax Bill then they will NOT be registering with the Assessor, so you need to direct questions to the website and/or the phone number above. The registration process either online, or by phone, should take no more than 5 minutes.
- Homeowners will be required to provide some basic information about themselves in order to retain their BASIC STAR exemption such as the social security number of ALL owners and their spouses.
- Homeowners that have not registered by December 1st will receive a reminder notice from NYS to register by the 12/31/13 deadline.
- On or about March 1, 2014 Assessors will receive notification from NYS which will list all of the homeowners that were found to be ineligible for BASIC STAR and/or did not register. This notification will be the Assessor’s authorization to remove the BASIC STAR exemption from their parcel.
- Homeowners who have been found to be ineligible for STAR will not be able to grieve the removal of their exemption with the Town Board of Assessment Review on Grievance Day. They will only have the right to administrative review before the State Board of Real Property Tax Services.
- Senior Citizens who receive the ENHANCED (SENIOR) STAR exemption are NOT impacted by this new legislation. They are still required to reapply each year with the Town Assessor.
- New homeowners and/or homeowners who DID NOT receive a BASIC STAR exemption on the 2013 Final Assessment Roll/2013 School Tax Bill will be required to apply with the Town Assessor by 3/1/14 for their exemption.
- Representatives from Tax & Finance/Office of Real Property Tax Services will be at the September 11th Full Board meeting to do a 10-15 minute presentation on the BASIC STAR registration process.