Thursday, October 23, 2008

Charlie Rangel gets tax break for Yankees

Charlie Rangel, the most powerful tax policy legislator, using his influence to get tax breaks for mega wealthy sports franchise owners...our tax system has left the realm of "tax breaks"...we are now into full blown corruption.

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The IRS has issued a ruling allowing the Yankees to use PILOTS to float an additional $300 million of bonds to finance the New Yankee Stadium. Interestingly, the Daily News suggests the IRS may be giving the Yankees a special deal that won't be available to other franchises. "The tax agency imposed tough new national regulations aimed at tightening up the use of tax-exempt financing for private businesses, including sports teams." Of course, the IRS also had some nudging from the politically influential Rep. Charles Rangel (D-Harlem), head of the House Ways and Means Committee, who submitted a letter to the IRS advocating the Yankees' position.

But that isn't all. Regular readers may recall having seen the story about the city of New York allegedly falsifying the assessment of the stadium to give the Yankees a larger benefit. That issue is still alive and well, as this article in the New York Daily News makes clear. New York State Assemblyman Charles Brodsy had this to say about the city's assessment, "This assessment was cooked. It was done in violation of sworn promises to the IRS. That, in and of itself, requires more investigation."