New York City's property tax has always been a thing of mystery, arcane practice, with a hint of mayhem. A current lawsuit under way may in the long-term peel back the lid of built-in inequity and unfairness, but what has been a somewhat amusing example of unintended consequences has finally become an emergency.
The cost-of-living, driven by primarily by high rents, high real estate prices and artificially inflated prices for everything from soup to nuts is making New York a place where only the very rich and the very poor can find succor. To be rich, and to be a condo owner means a lower tax bill than an apartment building in the Bronx.
UrbanTools always encourages more to join the party, so this summer the well-respected Regional Plan Association (RPA) is issuing a fourth iteration of its regional visioning plan entitled "The Region Transformed."
In the past, the RPA has supported and examined the idea of land value taxation particularly for the state of New Jersey. UrbanTools/CSE has partnered on several occasions with the RPA to educate and disseminate analysis of LVT.
In one of the planned functions of "the Region Transformed" will be to highlight the dysfunction of New York City's property tax, as well as address problems with other property tax regimes in New York, Connecticut, and New Jersey.
We hope and expect that land value taxation will be one option considered. It is time to repair a system that reinforces the idea that "them what has gets."