LITTLE VALLEY — The check’s in the mail. Or it soon will be — in the next several months.
The check is New York state’s Property Tax Rebate and statewide averages $179 per household. For the second year, the rebates will be based on income.
In Cattaraugus County, the average check will be $127.48 for taxpayers earning $75,000 or less, according to Daniel Martonis, director of the county’s Real Property Tax Services Department. It is based on school taxes.
The average check decrease to $127.47 for those earning between $75,000 and $150,000, $59.19 to those earning between $150,000 and $200,000, and $25.04 for those earning between $200,000 and $275,000.
For those seniors receiving Enhanced STAR on the school taxes, the average check will be $116.99. The amount differs by municipality from a high of $185.16 in South Valley to $44.64 in Napoli, Littler Valley, Great Valley.
The highest Basic STAR savings is $708 in the Olean City School District in the city of Olean, while the largest Enhanced STAR for those over 65 is $1,543 in the town of South Valley for the Frewsburg School District.
“Everyone should be getting checks between now and the next four months,” Martonis said. “If school districts stayed within the tax cap and they have STAR on their property, taxpayers will receive a check. It’s based partly on income.”
The average $127 per taxpayer check will double over the next couple of years, Martonis said. “I don’t know why they made it so complicated.”
Martonis said the tax rebates are supposed to go for two more years. “It’s all tied to the tax cap,” he added.
It’s expected that there will be fewer delayed or lost checks this year, Martonis said.
For the past three years, the state Department of Taxation and Finance have mailed out property tax relief checks to residents. Those households making under $75,000 received checks equal to 28 percent of their STAR amount. For example, a household with $1,000 in school taxes would get a check for $280. The rate dropped to 20.5 percent for those earning between $75,000 and $150,000.
For seniors with Enhanced STAR, they will receive checks for 12 percent of their STAR rebate next year, increasing to 34 percent in 2019.
The Basic STAR average of $750 per household in 2016 increases to $1,400 for seniors with Enhanced STAR.
(Contact reporter Rick Miller at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter, @RMillerOTH)