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Legislature Urges Delay in Changes to STAR Exemption

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Legislature Urges Delay in Changes to STAR Exemption

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

The Legislature reacted to a proposal in the coming year’s State Budget to convert the STAR (School Tax Relief Program) real property tax exemption to a personal income tax credit, which as proposed would start with exemptions granted for the 2015 Assessment Roll—applications that have already been approved by the Department of Assessment.  The Legislature, by unanimous (with Legislator Nate Shinagawa excused)  petitioned the State to delay to a personal income tax credit for any STAR exemption legally granted after the 2015 Assessment Roll to allow the public to be more adequately informed of this important change in their taxes, as of the March 1, 2015 taxable status date.  By delaying this desirable transition one assessment year, the measure states, the confusion, inconvenience, and financial anxiety for the taxpayer can be avoided.

Director of Assessment Jay Franklin called it “bad public policy to change the rules of the game” after the exemption has already legally been approved, and added that   he recently learned that the proposal at this point has been removed from both Assembly and Senate budget bills.