Thursday, June 28, 2012

Comptrollers Uncover Cell Phone Antenna Tax Cheats, Many in Brooklyn

Not only are your landlords frying your brains -- they may not be paying taxes on those rooftop cell phone towers, either.

City Comptroller John Liu and State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli said yesterday that New York City’s Department of Finance failed to collect an estimated $24 million in property taxes from property owners who neglected to report income from cell phone antennas.

That income can add up. The Dept. of Finance estimates that properties north of 125th Street and in the "outer" boroughs make about $2,000 a month per cell carrier that leases space. South of 125th Street, properties make an estimated $4,000 per month.

For some reason Brooklyn had the highest number of cell tower scofflaws, at 602. Manhattan came next, with 594. In Queens, the comptrollers uncovered 489 cell cheats; the Bronx had 363 and Staten Island had 60.

"This audit clearly outlines how the Finance Dept. can recover $24 million. That's real money that can stave off anything from tax increases to cuts in public services,” Comptroller Liu said.

“The audit findings released today show that with a little creativity and ingenuity the city can benefit tremendously," Comptroller DiNapoli said.

Photo by MK Metz

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