Ritchie to host STAR Workshops

State Senator Patty Ritchie is reminding homeowners that she will host STAR workshops in St. Lawrence and Oswego counties this week, aimed at helping those who currently receive Basic STAR re-register for the program.

Senator Ritchie is pictured at her Jefferson County STAR workshop, held last week at Watertown High School.
Senator Ritchie is pictured at her Jefferson County STAR workshop, held last week at Watertown High School.

As a result of Senator Ritchie’s recent efforts to encourage re-registration in the STAR program, more than 1,100 homeowners have clicked through her website to apply online and through her first workshop, held in Jefferson County, dozens of others received assistance completing their applications.

A new state law aimed at streamlining administration of the STAR program, and also helping to prevent fraud, requires current Basic STAR enrollees to re-register for the benefit, which saves the average household hundreds of dollars annually. The requirement does not affect senior homeowners who are enrolled in Enhanced STAR.

Only about 60 percent of current Basic STAR enrollees in Central and Northern New York have completed the process, which began Aug. 19, according to state officials. Roughly 20,000 Oswego, Jefferson and St. Lawrence County homeowners who currently receive Basic STAR savings have not re-registered. The deadline to re-register is Dec. 31.

Details on Senator Ritchie’s remaining workshops are as follows:

St. Lawrence County
(Jointly hosted by the St. Lawrence County Real Property Tax Office)
November 6, 4-6 p.m.
Gouverneur Central School
133 E. Barney St.

Oswego County
(Jointly hosted by Oswego County Real Property Tax Services and the Oswego County Assessors Association)
November 7, 4-6 p.m.
Pulaski Public Library, 4917 N. Jefferson St.

At the event, local assessors will also be on hand to assist homeowners with the re-registration process and offer information about other property tax discounts for which they also may qualify.

Homeowners may also register online, by clicking a link on Senator Ritchie’s website: www.ritchie.nysenate.gov, or by calling a special STAR hotline, (518) 457-2036. The hotline is available Monday through Friday, from 8:30 a.m. – 8 p.m.; and Saturdays, from 9 a.m. – 1 p.m.