Gotham Gazette

The Place for New York Policy and politics

tax lien sale

tax lien sale

  • 596 acres empty lot

    Nonprofits have a lot less to fear now as a new law takes effect (photo: @596Acres)


    Our interconnectedness has rarely been more pronounced than it is in this moment. The fact that we can take so many of our life-sustaining connections into the digital sphere is an unprecedented miracle. But if you’re missing New York’s places of physical gathering, where many of those connections were first forged, you’re not alone.

    At its core, New York is a city of communities precisely because of its bounty of gathering places. As we reflect on the ones we

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  • garden tax lien sale

    (photo: Sofie Hecht/Gotham Gazette)


    In New York City, tiny, vulnerable, nonprofit organizations too often lose the real estate they own to for-profit developers. These unjustifiable losses are a complete mix-up of city and state tax policy, through the mechanism called the tax lien sale. New York City needs to fix this problem by removing nonprofits from the tax lien sale.

    Nonprofits of various sizes -- religious institutions, universities, and community gardens alike -- frequently own property. These organizations, due to their nonprofit status,

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  • bdb water bill rebate bay ridge

    Mayor de Blasio makes an announcement (photo: Demetrius Freeman/Mayor's Office)


    Passing the buck is one thing. Passing seventy million bucks is quite another.

    Each year, New York City sells between $70 million and $120 million in unpaid tax debt, water charges, and emergency repair loans to a private trust. These liens—which enable the owner to foreclose on the property—then increase rapidly in value. The trust can charge nine percent interest on 1-3 family houses and 18 percent interest on multifamily housing, compounded

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