Pauper-in-Chief Flees to Florida to Evade Taxes
New Yorkers who pay their property taxes say GTFO.
With the recent announcement that Trump is making Florida his permanent residence to escape New York’s high state property taxes, I am reminded that the gold-plated boy previously applied for and received a state property tax break designed for “middle income” couples, called STAR (School Tax Relief program).
What the actual fuck?
I still can’t wrap my head around this incredible fact. NYC Finance Department records confirm that Trump qualified for the STAR tax break on his property tax bill for his Manhattan Trump Tower penthouse.
Trump received the tax break for at least 4 years, according to numerous sources. This, despite his repeated claims of a net worth of more than $10 billion, as he ran around the country on the 2016 campaign trail boasting ad nauseam about his business acumen.
But according to a report from Crain’s New York Business, Trump did in fact qualify for this so-called “middle income” property tax break for married couples who make $500,000 a year or less. Yeah, you read that right.
David Cay Johnston, Pulitzer-prize winning journalist, independently validates this claim in his own meticulous research into Trump’s finances.
Furthermore, Trump’s biographer, Tony Schwartz (Art of the Deal), asserts that Trump’s finances are not at all what they appear. Schwartz has often commented that people will be shocked to learn the truth when Trump’s tax returns are finally made public. Although the man lives like a billionaire, he actually doesn’t earn all that much, relatively speaking that is.
The STAR tax credit is top of mind for me right now because I lost mine when I lost the residency requirement for a couple of years. Recently, I filed to have my STAR credit reinstated now that my primary residence is once again in New York. I expect the process to be a straightforward one. But, make no mistake, annual income verification and residency requirements are strictly monitored in the state of New York. They are not sloppy about it.
So I find it most interesting that Trump’s 2016 campaign spokesperson, Hope Hicks, claimed that the tax break he received was “an error on the part of the City of New York.” She confirmed that he received the credit “for many years while there was no income verification requirement.” (Source: Fortune)
New York’s Finance Department says otherwise about the income verification requirement. They maintain that they conduct rigorous income verification along with residency verification every year. I can personally attest to both.
Hope Hicks concluded her remarks on the subject to the Fortune reporter by claiming that Trump had not received the STAR tax break since 2009. (Corey Lewandowski has repeated the talking points.)
But, really, who the hell knows? Trump has purposefully hidden his taxes from the public. I am not alone in suspecting Trump’s taxes are a convoluted thicket of cheating, lies, fraud, and outright theft. What we do know (or think we know) is that according to his Personal Financial Disclosure filed with the Federal Election Commission (FEC) his stated income in 2014 was $362 million.
So, what is it Trump? What would you have the American people believe? You and Melania earned less than $500,000 a year prior to 2014? Certainly, you would not have applied for the credit in the first place if you were not eligible, right? Or, is Hope Hicks right? You fraudulently applied for the tax break and got it because of New York state’s sloppy recordkeeping? Either way, it sucks.
Meanwhile, genuinely middle class homeowners like me are still waiting to get our STAR tax benefit. So, Mr. soon-to-be Ex-President, go ahead and flee for your Florida Homestead Exemption. The White House will not be your personal piggy bank for much longer. Don’t let the door hit you on the way out.