The Real Deal New York

Trump received “middle-class” tax break on Trump Tower PH

GOP frontrunner's annual income must have been under $500K to qualify for STAR program

March 08, 2016 04:45PM

Trump Tower at 725 Fifth Avenue in Midtown (inset: Donald Trump)

Trump Tower at 725 Fifth Avenue in Midtown (inset: Donald Trump)

For all the talk of Donald Trump’s supposedly enormous … net worth, the GOP presidential frontrunner apparently doesn’t make enough money to disqualify him from a New York state property tax break usually reserved for ordinary homeowners.

Property records filed with the city’s Department of Finance indicate Trump received a $302 tax benefit through the New York State School Tax Relief Program, or STAR, for his Trump Tower penthouse at 725 Fifth Avenue.

To be eligible for STAR, a married household is required to have a combined annual income of $500,000 or less. That means Trump must have earned less than that amount, according to Crain’s, given that the state program requires submitters to file federal income tax returns.

Of course, all this doesn’t mean the Donald isn’t rich; much of his wealth – estimated at anywhere from $2.9 billion to “in excess of TEN BILLION DOLLARS,” according to the man himself — is held in the value of properties that he either owns or has licensed to bear his name. But it also doesn’t mean that Trump is as cash-rich as he’s indicated.

The STAR program, created in 1997, offers a roughly $300 annual property tax benefit for those who qualify, with hundreds of thousands of New York homeowners having received the break. [Crain’s]Rey Mashayekhi

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