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FYI: The City Council’s Committee on Aging yesterday approved a bill to raise the income ceiling for seniors to qualify for the Senior Citizen Rent Increase Exemption to $24,000 from $20,000. Governor Pataki signed the authorizing state legislation in August. Under the program, seniors who qualify by income and live in rent stabilized or Mitchell-Lama housing are not required to pay more than one-third of their income in rent. Landlords get a tax credit to cover the difference between what their tenants pay and the actual rent. The Independent Budget Office estimates the new ceiling will allow 2,575 people to join the program. Currently, 110,000 households are eligible, but only about 40 percent of them actually receive it according to IBO estimates. The committee also called on Albany to lower the share of rent seniors must pay from one-third to one-fourth of their income. [10/22/03]

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