BRISTOL - The City Council raised the annual income requirement for the Senior Volunteer Tax Relief Program, allowing more seniors to participate.
The program is through the city’s Department of Aging, which is located at the Bristol Senior Center. Senior citizens, 65 years of age and older, who volunteer a minimum of 50 hours in a fiscal year at local non-profits qualify for $300 property tax credit, through the program. The credit is then applied to the property tax bill of the following year that the volunteer work is performed.
“The change is to increase the annual income,” said City Councilor Greg Hahn, council liaison to the city’s commission on aging.
Previously, to qualify for the program, an individual senior citizen’s gross annual income could not exceeded $35,200, and a senior couple’s gross annual income could not exceed $42,900, Hahn explained.
The City Council voted to raise that annual income requirement at the Jan. 9 council meeting, though. The vote raised the annual gross income to $45,000 for single individuals and $50,000 for couples, he said.
“It’s our hope that this will allow more people to participate and take advantage of it, because to date, there has not been a full utilization of this program,” Mayor Ellen Zoppo-Sassu said.
The new requirements in the program will be effective Feb. 1, she added.
The program is on a first-come, first-serve basis and the total tax credits earned through the program will not exceed $24,000 total in one fiscal year. The City Council will review the program after one year.
The program is meant to promote the goals of scientific, educational, literary, historical, governmental, charitable and nonprofit entities in the city by drawing upon the skills, knowledge and experience of its senior residents, according to the program.
Lorenzo Burgio can be reached at 860-973-5088 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.