The city follows the circuit breaker program that the state of Maine provides for seniors. For South Portland you must be 68 years or older, adjusted gross income must fall within state requirements (which changes each year), taxpayer must file a property tax fairness credit form with the state. The maximum benefit a single household would receive is $300, maximum benefit of a couple household $400. These amounts are pro-rated as well based upon the amount the taxpayer receives from the state.

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Taxpayers can call and be put on the mailing list to receive an application which will be mailed January of each year. The city will respond to the completed application with a letter of acceptance or letter explaining why the application was not accepted.

Please find following helpful frequently asked questions:

Do both applicants have to be over the age of 68?

No, as long as the first applicant is over the age of 68, the co-applicant can be under 68.

What if I turn 68 later this year after the May 1 deadline?

You must be 68 on or before April 30, 2020 to qualify for this year’s program.

What if I haven’t filed my state income tax forms yet (Form 1040ME)?

You must wait until you have completed your 1040ME, including Schedule PTFC (Property Tax Fairness Credit) before you apply for the city’s program. Remember to make a copy of your state 1040ME and PTFC forms to provide to the sity with your application.

I rented for part of the year and owned my own home for part of the year. Am I eligible for a refund?

Yes, if you otherwise qualify. List the tax assessed for the part of the year you owned and occupied your own home and claim the amount of rent you paid for the portion of the year you rented. Remember that each home must have been your primary home during the part of the year you occupied the home.

Do I have to provide my phone number and what will it be used for?

Yes, we must have a daytime phone number provided in case we have questions about your application. We will not call unless we require additional information. We will not give out your phone number to any other party or agency.

Will I automatically be sent an application next year?

Yes, if you qualified for a refund this year, we will automatically send you an application next January.

Jordan Shelburn is controller for the city of South Portland.

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