Monday, October 30, 2006
Interesting article in the Sunday New York Daily News: Empire of the Son, by Douglas Feiden:
Spitzer has lived rent-free with his family at 985 Fifth Ave. for 13 years. The 25-story tower off 79th St. has just two apartments per floor and terraces that look down at the Metropolitan Museum of Art....Thanks to his dad's generosity, Spitzer, his wife and three daughters have lived in a home graced with at least three bedrooms, four baths, a balcony, library and sweeping vistas of Central Park....
Vetted by lawyers and accountants, the living arrangement is both lawful and proper, said Darren Dopp, Spitzer's communications director: The father pays an annual gift tax on the present he gives his son. "These and other financial matters are handled by professionals who ensure that everything is done in strict accordance with city, state and federal law," Dopp said. The market value of the gift is reported annually on real estate tax filings and on Bernard Spitzer's tax returns. But citing privacy, Dopp declined to disclose the apartment's rent, the gift's value or the amount of the gift tax paid. Three real estate brokers familiar with the building say that a spread of comparable size could lease for $16,000 to $20,000 a month. That puts the gift's current value at an estimated $192,000 to $240,000 a year.
(Hat tip: Bob Hayes.)