City Council to scrutinize $2.8B in developer tax breaks

Lawmakers to release 44-page report on Thursday

Sep.September 22, 2016 08:02 AM

The City Council is calling for greater oversight of $2.8 billion in tax breaks developers received last year.

At a hearing on Thursday, the council will release a 44-page report breaking down the many types of tax breaks developers take advantage of, according to Politico.

The largest tax break, the Industrial and Commercial Incentive Program (ICIP), accounted for $681 million in the past fiscal year. The program, which offered exemptions of up to 25 years for constructing or rehabilitating industrial and commercial buildings, was killed in 2008.

Its replacement program accounted for $28 million in tax breaks last fiscal year.

One current tax break even dates back to 1859 for the Chrysler Building.

The study also found that the Commercial Revitalization Program, a stimulus for Lower Manhattan and the Garment Center District, took $33 million off city tax rolls.

According to Politico, the 44-page study will be paired with a piece of legislation that requires lawmakers to review some of the tax breaks each year, with all of them covered over an eight-year period.

A recent report found that the city will forgo $1.4 billion in tax revenue in FY 2017 courtesy of the now-dead 421a. Property tax breaks under the 421a program will cut into the New York’s tax revenue until 2044, according to a report by the city’s Independent Budget Office.

Developers and property owners argue New York City’s property taxes are out of whack and abatements are often the only time to break even. [Politico]James Kleimann

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