From the Daily News:
Today, New York City faces a frightening economic future because it has priced itself as a luxury product dependent on a narrow set of customers, namely Wall Street firms and those businesses which lived off the once-thriving work provided by the finance industry, like corporate lawyers or high-powered consultants. But with Washington eyeing a flurry of new regulations and taxes on financial firms that could limit future profits and growth in the industry, New York may be hard-pressed to find other industries that can boost its fortunes.
Let’s start with property taxes. Thanks to the mayor’s tax increases, as well as sharp boosts in assessments, firms located in Midtown Manhattan pay, on average, $15.20 a square foot in property taxes, up 53% since 2001, according to research by the Studley real estate firm.
That bite is more than triple the national average of $4.48 a square foot for major cities, and it’s five times the average of commercial property taxes per square foot in northern New Jersey, resulting in millions of dollars of extra taxes for big companies The bottom line: Since 2002, total real estate tax collections in New York have almost doubled, from $8.6 billion to $16.1 billion — a rate of growth nearly three times the rate of inflation.
Even more troubling is that the city taxes have grown under Bloomberg, who constructed the city’s budget as if the housing and finance bubbles of a few years ago would go on forever. A previous IBO study estimated that the local tax burden in 1997 was 79% higher than other cities, but the burden then shrank because of tax cuts enacted by the Giuliani administration and the City Council in the late 1990s. Between 1997 and 2000, the burden declined by about 8%, before starting to rise again under Bloomberg.