STAR program has new wrinkle

There will be some paperwork to complete for people who wish to maintain their current New York state STAR exemptions.

Robert Wright from the state Department of Taxa-tion and Finance was present at Tuesday’s Common

Council meeting to explain a change in this year’s procedure in the Basic STAR program.

“We’re going to send letters out to every property owner who is receiving a STAR exemption. That letter provides a STAR code and information on how to register,” Wright stated. “They would go to our Tax and Finance website and enter the information that’s required, basically the owners of the property’s name, their Social Security numbers, a statement whether they make less than $500,000 of income and their contact information.”

Wright added that information will be checked against the state database.

“If they have no other STAR exemptions within the state or have another primary residence, then we’ll inform the assessor of that. They can only receive one STAR exemption in New York state,” he explained. “Basically, this legislation was passed due to audits by the Comptroller’s Office, which found there were numerous people across the state receiving double STAR exemptions, so this was enacted in order to cut down on fraud. This is a one-time process … the legislation allows the department to do it with a minimum of three years to check this.”

Wright said anyone with questions on STAR re-registration can go online at If a person does not have internet access, they can call 518-457-2036.

After the meeting, Wright noted that seniors over 65 years of age are not required to do anything concerning the new STAR requirement. Letters are expected to be sent next week to current basic STAR recipients explaining the requirements.

“This is just one time right now to make sure this is just their primary residence and they don’t own any other property in New York state they’re getting an exemption on,” Wright added. “It’s basically pretty simple.”

The city assessor’s office is also available to help and can be reached at 366-9836.

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