YONKERS, N.Y. – Yonkers is a city on the move. The unemployment rate is at its lowest point since 2008, home sales and sale prices are up, new businesses are opening and more people are shopping and supporting the local economy.
It’s great news for Yonkers, but as the city’s economy starts to rev up, we’ve got to remain focused on ensuring that Yonkers remains affordable for our seniors.
Years ago in the State Legislature, I helped create the STAR property tax relief program and Enhanced STAR program for seniors, which saved Yonkers seniors up to $2,200 on last year’s tax bill. As Mayor, I’m proud that we’ve passed three consecutive bi-partisan budgets that kept property taxes under the 2 percent cap. And last year, Yonkers became the first big city in the state to provide veterans with a new exemption on school taxes.
Now Yonkers is poised to become one of the first municipalities in New York to expand important rent benefits that ensure fixed-income seniors can continue to afford to rent and live in our city. Under the Senior Citizen Rent Increase Exemption (SCRIE) program, passed unanimously by the City Council, which I will sign into law, Yonkers will nearly double the income threshold to $50,000 to qualify for rent benefits. It will keep seniors in their homes and protect them from year-to-year rent increases.
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