NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — They were crying foul Friday about a sweetheart tax loophole that will enable Yankees slugger Alex Rodriguez to live in his new $6 million luxury West Side penthouse and pay virtually no real estate taxes.
The cost of a 28th row ticket for the Yankees 2011 home opener is $1,211.
The cost of an A-Rod autographed bat is $700.
The value of the Yankee third baseman’s special real estate tax break is just about priceless. He’s paying the bargain basement price of less than 4 cents a day.
“It’s really obscene, but not only that people who live in these buildings pay full taxes and they keep going up and up and up,” Batya Lewton, president of the Coalition for a Livable West Side, told CBS 2’s Marcia Kramer.
Rodriguez and all the residents of his posh high rise will get tax breaks for 10 years under the city’s 421A tax abatement program. Luxury developers get tax breaks in exchange for making sure affordable units get built elsewhere. Rodriguez is one of some 45,000 New Yorkers who have scored the tax break.
“I think it’s outrageous,” Lewton said.
When Rodriguez’s moves into his $6 million, five-bedroom penthouse his tax bill will be $1,150. In contrast, Stephen and Phyllis Franciosa pay $3,100 in taxes one their one-family home in the Pelham Bay section of the Bronx.
“Going up again up, up, up,” Stephen said. “We got to make sure we don’t start chasing people from the city because it just gets too expensive.”
“Everything’s going up,” Phyllis added.
“I think my constituents feel a sense of outrage,” NYC Councilman James Vacca said.
“To find that someone rich like this is paying so little, it just goes to our core our feeling that this is not right. This has got to be addressed.”
The councilman said the law needs to be changed because this year alone the program will cost the city $900 million in lost revenue.
A-Rod’s taxes are so low that if he paid the going rate his tax bill would be 50 times higher. He should get such a break when he faces the Red Sox pitching staff.
City officials claim the tax breaks on Rodriguez’ building helped build over 575 units of affordable housing in the Bronx.
Upset another rich athlete has gotten a break? Tell us your thoughts in the comments section below.