The Real Deal New York

De Blasio calls for an end to 421a

"If Albany won't mend it, let's end it," mayor says for the first time

June 08, 2015 08:00AM

Tenant advocates protesting 421a and Mayor Bill de Blasio

Tenant advocates protesting 421a and Mayor Bill de Blasio

Mayor Bill de Blasio has called for an end to the 421a tax break if Governor Andrew Cuomo and the state Legislature will be unable to agree on reforms for the program later this month.

“If Albany will not give us the changes we need, if Albany will not strengthen rent regulations, if Albany will not pass a mansion tax, if Albany will not protect us, then here’s what I think about any tax breaks for condominiums, luxury condominiums, any tax breaks for developers who are not going to create affordable housing,” the mayor said at the First Corinthian Baptist Church on Sunday, according to Capital New York, “I say end those tax breaks once and for all.”

The tax program and rent regulation laws are set to expire next week.

“If Albany won’t mend it, let’s end it,” de Blasio said, according to Capital.

The mayor’s proposed reforms to the program call for an end to 421a breaks for condo projects as well as a required inclusionary policy for affordable units to be built in buildings receiving the tax breaks and extends the abatement to 35 years from the current 25. The plan also includes a wage requirement for all workers in subsidized buildings, but there’s no such clause requiring minimum wage for the construction workers building them, which has disappointed the unions.

Cuomo responded that de Blasio’s plan, which has the support of the Real Estate Board of New York, is a giveaway to developers and wouldn’t pass the state Legislature. In turn, de Blasio called the governor’s response “disingenuous.” [Capital NY] — Claire Moses