Lessons from Vancouver for NYC’s Debate Over Taxing Vacant Land to Ease Housing Crunch

A pied-à-terre tax would also require state approval, but it already has a degree of political support in Albany. Manhattan State Senator Brad Hoylman introduced the idea when running for reelection in 2014, and Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito endorsed it the following year. It also has the support of groups like the Fiscal Policy Institute and the Regional Plan Association.

The political appeal of such a tax is clear, since it would be primarily aimed at nonresidents and the wealthy, but many see it as sound policy as well. Moses Gates of the RPA says the plan has several unique advantages—the biggest of which is it activates a new supply of housing while earning, rather than costing, the city money. “You don’t have a whole lot of revenue-positive ways of increasing the housing supply in New York,” he says. “You’re generally throwing a lot of taxpayer money into not only low-income housing, but to some extent even market-rate housing.”

Read the full article in City Limits