Saturday, September 17, 2005

Property Taxes to Rise

The NY Times reported on Saturday that homeowners will be facing a 4.3% rise in their property taxes a rise that reflects the jump in the value of city real estate. This is precisely the campaign issue the Anthony Weiner had used to get the boost that pushed him into second in the Democratic primary.

As Weiner appropriately pointed out, the increase in the real estate tax in 2003 was not the 18 or so percent but was really closer to 40% if rising propery assesments were factored in. Now it appears that more is to come. As our old ally Seymour Scwartz of the Briarwood Civic Association says, "The noose is tightening." Schwartz rightly points out how these rising rates impact working people who will also be facing skyrocketing fuel bills this winter.

The question remains here as to whether the Ferrer campaign will be able to capitalize on this issue. Certainly the response of the mayor's spokesman that the city's $400 rebate is "a way to cushion the blow" indicates that an aggressive attack on the mayor's tax targeting of homeowners and small businesses could do for Freddy what it did for Weiner. Clearly a property tax reduction and not a rebate is "the most effecient and substantive way to provide relief to small homeowners in this "red-hot real estate market."