City council minority leader Jimmy Oddo released today a study that the Independent Budget Office did at his request that is intended to show that the calls emanating from Zuccotti Park notwithstanding, the ultra-rich in New York City already pay a disproportionate share of personal income tax.
According to a release:
On October 6, 2011, as the coalition referring to themselves as the 99% were approaching their one-month anniversary of “occupying” Zuccotti Park, New York City Council Minority Leader James S. Oddo (R- Staten Island/Brooklyn) wrote to the New York City Independent Budget Office (IBO) requesting an analysis of the distribution of wealth in New York city and the relative New York City income tax burden. In effect, he wanted to cut through the rhetoric on both sides in order to learn who the top 1% actually are, who the 99% are, and how much various groups with various levels of income pay in New York City personal income taxes.
Among some of the IBO’s findings were the fact that the minimum income of a member of the top 1% in New York City is approximately $493,439, and that the average income in the top 1% is $2,247,515. This top 1 %–34,598 taxpayers–pays 43.2 % of the total city personal income tax burden.
Although there are very few calls to raise rates on the top 10 % of income earners, the IBO includes data about them, including that to be a member of the top 10% in New York City requires a minimum income of $105,368, and that the top 10% pays 71.2 % of the city personal income tax.
The IBO also notes that 1,180,000 filers pay no New York City personal income taxes at all, and many low-income New Yorkers receive more in refunds than they owe in taxes.
“I asked for IBO to conduct this analysis because there seems to be a lot of rhetoric out there about who does and does not pay their fair share of taxes,” Mr. Oddo said. “I think the numbers bear out the argument that we should not be attacking higher-income New Yorkers because their tax dollars fund, in large measure, all the services that New Yorkers have come to rely on.”