One way for Mayor de Blasio to achieve his goal of raising taxes on the rich could be a "pied-a-terre tax," Capital New York reports:
Every year, the city would levy a graduated tax on those 1.74 percent of pied-à-terres worth at least $5 million. (It would also apply to the still-undefined number of single-family homes worth a similar amount.)
The first $5 million in market value would not be subject to the tax. Rather, the tax would start at 0.5 percent for the first $1 million in value over $5 million and rise gradually, so that owners of apartments worth between $8 million and $10 million would pay a 2 percent tax on the increment over $5 million.
The 3 percent rate would apply to units worth between $10 million and $25 million. And the highest rate, 4 percent, would apply only to those units worth more than $25 million.
There are only 445 units that fall into that final category, yet together they would account for 83 percent of the total levy, or $551 million of the $665 million total, or an average of $1.2 million a year.
The tax idea is attracting praise from one business group:
Kathryn Wylde, the president of the Partnership for New York City, a pro-business organization whose board is chaired by BlackRock C.E.O. Laurence Fink and Viacom C.E.O. Philippe Dauman, said that it's something the group is "very receptive to" in the context of a larger tax reform package that streamlines the code and lessens its burden on small businesses.
"I think the concept of taxing people who enjoy the benefits of city services but don't pay income taxes and are not residents here is absolutely right," she said...
"We need these revenues that are, if you will, low-hanging fruit, meaning not paid by people who live and vote here, to bridge the city toward a more sensible, rational system of taxation," said Wylde.
Someone may want to send Ms. Wylde a copy of my biography of Samuel Adams. The book might refresh her understanding of the concept of "taxation without representation," and of how it is antithetical to the principles of liberty. These apartment owners already pay property taxes and they pay real estate transfer taxes. But they are inviting targets for taxation because, as Ms. Wylde points out, they do not vote in New York City.