2006-10-05 / From The Mayor...

From The Mayor's Desk ...

Homeowners' Rebate Checks Are In The Mail

From The Mayor's Desk ...

This week, more than a half-million New York City homeowners should be on the lookout for some welcome mail from the City - in the form of $400 rebate checks. Last week, my administration began sending out tax rebate checks to 600,000 property owners across the city. This is the third round of property tax rebates that are our way of saying thank you to homeowners for helping the city through its toughest fiscal crisis in decades.

These rebates are going to New Yorkers who made the biggest sacrifices to protect essential city services when times were tough. But because they did, today New York City is stronger than we were before 9/11.

Our quality of life is better than it was five years ago. We've driven crime down 22 percent to record lows, and the safest big city in the nation is getting even safer. Our streets are the cleanest they've been since 1975. Our economy is growing again - our unemployment rate is down to 5.1 percent. Most homeowners will spend the rebates at neighborhood businesses. That will help keep our economy growing and create jobs in all five boroughs.

The rebates mailed out last week went to the owners of houses, cooperatives and condominiums. As it did last year, the Finance Department is mailing checks directly to eligible owners, including individual owners of cooperative apartments. The vast majority of homeowners will receive $400 checks, unless their annual tax liability is less than $400. In that case, they will receive a refund equal to the amount of their tax liability.

The Department of Finance will mail additional checks in the coming weeks as it continues to process property tax payments. Homeowners who owe more than $25 in property taxes for periods before July 1, 2005, are not eligible until they pay the Department of Finance. You can check the Finance Department's website at www.nyc.gov/finance or call 311 to see if you are eligible.

The homeowner rebates are scheduled to end this year, which is why I am pushing the State Legislature and the Governor to extend this vital program through 2009.

Homeowners helped us all get through the fiscal crisis, and now that New York City's economic outlook is brighter, they deserve to get money back. It's just the right thing to do.

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