Recipients can check rebate status at www.patreasury.gov; Treasurer encourages recipients to select direct deposit for fast, safe and secure future transactions
HARRISBURG, Pa., June 28, 2012 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Older Pennsylvanians, widows and widowers, and people with disabilities who are expecting a state property tax or rent rebate should receive that payment next week, according to State Treasurer Rob McCord, who said the Treasury Department will issue more than half a million of those payments on July 2. The payments total nearly $238 million, he added.
"There are a lot of people who count on this rebate to ensure they are able to stay in their home," said Treasurer McCord. "We take our job of processing and issuing these payments seriously, and today we want to let those who expect a rebate know that the 'check is on the way,' so to speak."
Treasurer McCord said of the 505,000 property tax and rent rebates to be issued July 2, over 365,000 will be in the form of a mailed check, while nearly 140,000 payments will be made electronically. Typically Property Tax and Rent Rebate Program payments are issued July 1, but that day falls on a Sunday this year.
Earlier this year, the state Department of Revenue extended the application deadline until Dec. 31, 2012 for rebates on property taxes or rent paid in 2011. Those rebates will be issued as applications are reviewed and processed. Citizens may obtain claim form PA-1000 at www.revenue.state.pa.us or by calling 1-888-222-9190.
Treasurer McCord encouraged those who have yet to apply – or who expect to apply next year – to choose the direct deposit option in order to receive their rebate.
"In many ways, direct deposit is a better option for the recipient and the state," said Treasurer McCord. "The recipient gets their rebate sooner and in the form of a secure electronic transfer – as opposed to a mailed check that could be stolen or lost – and they do not need to make a trip to the bank in order to cash the check. Direct deposits are also cheaper for the state to process, which saves tax dollars. Many people who receive this rebate receive other benefits, such as Social Security, so they likely already have a bank account to receive those funds."
On average, it costs the Commonwealth $1.30 to process, print and send a hard copy check, but only 73 cents to process an electronic payment. Treasurer McCord also noted Treasury has greatly improved its internal controls and processes, which have enabled it to presort mail for the U.S. Postal Service. That ability saves up to 10 cents per piece of mail and cuts the need for employee overtime.
Treasury's Mail Center processes approximately 6.5 million pieces per year, and it will save $34,000 on the cost of this mailing alone, the Treasurer added. Since June 2009, the department has saved nearly $3 million on the cost of its Mail Center through more efficient operations.
The Property Tax/Rent Rebate Program benefits Pennsylvania residents who are 65 and older; a widow or widower age 50 and older; and those who are disabled age 18 or older. The annual income limit is $35,000 for homeowners and $15,000 for renters. Half of Social Security income is excluded.
Applicants may check the status of their rebate claims by clicking on the Property Tax/Rent Rebate graphic at www.patreasury.gov or by calling 1-888-PATAXES.
The Pennsylvania Treasury logo is available at http://www.globenewswire.com/newsroom/prs/?pkgid=11427
CONTACT: Media contact: Elizabeth Foose 717-787-2991 firstname.lastname@example.org