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The following is a press release from the offices of Councilman Vincent Gentile:

Deputy Leader Councilman Vincent J. Gentile today called on the New York City Department of Finance to notify homeowners that they must reapply for the New York State School Tax Relief Program (STAR). The popular tax relief program provides a partial exemption from school property taxes.

The New York State School Tax Relief Program requires a one-time registration. For those enrolled in STAR last year, the deadline to register was April 1st; however, New York State is still accepting late registrations. New STAR enrollees will be required to register at the time they apply.

“The STAR program has succeeded in delivering millions of dollars in tax relief,” Councilman Vincent J. Gentile said. “The Department of Finance should be doing everything it possibly can in order to notify homeowners that they risk missing out on this great program if they don’t reapply.”

New York’s STAR program provides a partial exemption from school taxes for most homeowners. The program does not affect the overall revenue given to a school district because the state makes up the difference in state aid given to the school district. Over the past dozen years, actual State disbursements for the STAR program have totaled over $37 billion.

“This is a proverbial pot of gold for hardworking New Yorkers struggling to get by; it should not be kept secret. Homeowners need to be made aware of the protocols and deadlines.”

Gentile also plans to introduce legislation in the City Council which would require the Department of Finance to provide a mailed notice to property owners along with information regarding the deadline for STAR registration, instructions for late registration and the web address and phone number to register with the New York State Department of Taxation and Finance Home.

“We need to make sure people are being given all the tools they need to get some relief. When it comes to tax abatement programs, knowledge is power,” Gentile concluded.

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