E-STAR program qualification now requires income verification
More paperwork is now required for seniors to qualify for New York state's Enhanced School Tax Relief, or STAR, program.
It gives those older than 65 a rebate on property taxes if their income falls below $86,300.
Before the change, all seniors had to do was fill out a box on the Enhanced STAR application to qualify. Now, they must enroll in the Income Verification Program, a one-time process state officials say is an effort to curb fraud. That means filling out an extra form, providing proof of income like a tax return and submitting it to a local tax assessor.
Some fear that seniors won't realize they haven't filled out the paperwork for the income verification and, in turn, their taxes will rise significantly.
The deadline to enroll is Jan. 2 of next year.