Too many Islanders still haven’t registered for STAR

While more than two million taxpayers throughout the state have been re-registering for their School Tax Relief (STAR) tax exemptions and 71 percent of Suffolk County residents have done so, as of this week, only 58 percent of those who are thought to be eligible on Shelter Island have re-registered.

The Basic STAR exemption is available on the primary residence of homeowners whose incomes are under $500,000.

To combat problems in the system that found thousands of taxpayers receiving such exemptions on more than one property, a new state law requires property owners to re-register this year by December 31. The exemption is only for a taxpayer’s primary residence.

Local assessor Al Hammond advises that he doesn’t have a list of who has or hasn’t registered and won’t get that list until February — too late to register — so he’s concerned that some who are eligible won’t have re-registered in time to assure a reduction in their taxes.

If you’re eligible, you can register online at www.ny.tax.gov. You will need your STAR code and if you don’t have the code, call 518-457-2036 for assistance. You may also register by telephone if you prefer.