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Billionaire Wants Another 30 Year Amherst Tax Break!

Filed under: Local Interest

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In the City of Buffalo, billionaire Jeremy Jacobs worth $2.8 billion wants more tax breaks on top of the $4.1 million his company Delaware North has received over the years.

In Amherst, according to the Buffalo News, billionaire Stephen Ross, who is even richer than Jacobs with a net worth of $4.4 billion wants public assistance for an apartment building he owns. For thirty years Ross’s property located at 285 Pepper Tree Drive in Amherst has received a break on taxes. Thirty years is a long time, but not long enough for Ross as he wants another thirty year tax break.

Ross is the founder of a company called Related Housing Companies and he ranks #286 on Forbes richest 400 people. Ross owns the Miami Dolphins football team and recently donated $200 million to the University of Michigan.  

Related’s web site describes the company as:

“Today, Related owns and operates a premier portfolio of high quality assets valued at over $15 billion. With offices in New York, Chicago, Dallas, Los Angeles, Miami, San Francisco, Abu Dhabi, San Paolo and Shanghai, Related manages an operating portfolio that includes luxury residential, affordable and workforce apartments, commercial, retail and mixed-use developments.”

Without a tax break Billionaire Ross would pay $67,484.50 in town/county taxes in 2013 for his property assessed at $4.7 million and $106,408 for school taxes. Instead Ross pays $23,118.10 in town/county taxes and pays $0 in school tax. Ross is receiving a tax break of $150,774.50 in 2013 and has received a tax break every year for thirty years.

MJ Peterson has also been receiving a thirty year tax break on their apartment complex located at 501-511 Robin and 910-937 Robin, which they also want to extend for another thirty years. Without a tax break MJ Peterson would pay $52,424 in town/county taxes in 2013 for 501-511 Robin assessed at $3.5 million and $66,573.90 in school taxes. Instead MJ Peterson pays $19,105.70 in town/county taxes and $0 in school tax. MJ Peterson is receiving a tax break of $99,892.20 per year and has received a break every year for thirty years.

Without a tax break MJ Peterson would pay $54,207 in town/county taxes in 2013 for 910-937 Robin assessed at $3.6 million and $69,530.40 in school taxes. Instead MJ Peterson pays $19,409.10 in town/county taxes and $0 in school tax. MJ Peterson is receiving a tax break of $104,328.30 per year and has received a break every year for thirty years.

Between the three properties the town/county and school district are losing $354,995 in 2013 alone. For thirty years Ross and MJ Peterson have received tax breaks which have allowed them to pay $0 for school taxes. Meanwhile I and every other property owner pays thousands of dollars in school taxes. Enough already, the Amherst Town Board should deny the request for another thirty year tax abatement to Ross and MJ Peterson.

What do you think?

www.reinventinggov.org


  • jimd54

    The MJ Peterson properties you are talking about are senior adult housing. My parents moved into Amherst in 1957 and paid all applicable taxes until my father died in 2001. When we sold their house my mother moved in to one of the MJ Peterson units in question. I feel when someone pays 40 or 50 years in taxes they should maybe get a break at life’s end. However for some reason in the last ten years or so many of these units are rented by immigrants who have family members here to sponsor them. In other words a young couple may come here from another country, establish themselves and bring their parents to live in housing paid by taxpayer money. Can’t support that.

  • UncleBluck

    No matter what you call it …its is WELFARE….its just ok if you are a rich corporation. I say all residents of Amherst should ban together and demand a 30 year tax break

  • BufChester

    You all don’t understand, Related and MJ Peterson are entitled to those tax breaks because without them their profit would be reduced.

  • joeschmidbauer

    Thank you
    Jjim Allen for making Amherst the safest city for the wealthly

  • Michele

    These are both project based Section 8 HUD projects with full rental assistance and guaranteed rents for the entire 30 year period. Thus there is virtually zero risk to the developer/owners. Related and MJ are proposing to sell the project themselves (not to be confused with a re finance) for $12M and to request housing tax credits from the State which they are entitled to if the IDA floats bonds for them. Furhter, they will seeminly also empty (and pocket) the project reserves from both projects only to recapitalize them with the proceeds from the sale of the housing credits. This is a super bonanza for the billionaire owner of a lousy NFL team and another rape of the taxpayers in Erie County, the town of Amherst and Sweethome Schools. The light of day although sanitizing is apparently also futile.

  • Matthew Ricchiazzi

    Great article. We need to end these loopholes and dissolve the IDAs.