De Blasio: Raising property taxes “off the table”

Mayor says his office will take furloughs in the coming months

New York /
Sep.September 16, 2020 04:06 PM
Mayor Bill de Blasio (Getty; iStock)

Mayor Bill de Blasio (Getty; iStock)

Good news for real estate owners: Mayor Bill de Blasio said he won’t consider raising property taxes to close the city’s widening budget gap.

The mayor told reporters that raising property taxes even 1 percent was “off the table, period,” the New York Post reported. De Blasio pays $4,000 in annual taxes on each of two Park Slope homes that he and First Lady Chirlane McCray bought in 2000 and 2004.

In June, the City Council gave some property owners a slight reprieve from interest payments on overdue annual taxes. Industry groups complained that owners of larger properties were not given a break on penalties, at least during the pandemic.

Some members of the City Council had pushed for a 0 percent interest rate late fee, but Speaker Corey Johnson said at the time such a measure would have created “significant cash issues for the city.”

To close the $1 billion budget gap, the city is considering mass layoffs and has sought permission from the state for short-term borrowing. Meanwhile, de Blasio announced Wednesday that he and his staff will take weeklong furloughs in the coming months.

Progressives have called on Gov. Andrew Cuomo to raise taxes on the wealthy to close the budget gap, but he has insisted that aid come from the federal government. Business executives, including many in the real estate industry, last week called on the city to improve quality-of-life issues, citing an earlier report that raising taxes may be necessary. [NYP] — Georgia Kromrei


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