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Protesters Call Out Taxpayer-Funded Luxury Condos with #subsidizemypenthouse

This week, New York residents stormed one of the most luxurious residential towers in New York City, One57, with… floaties?

A protester smiles while holding a brightly colored pool floaty
Photo courtesy of Real Affordability for All on Facebook

Turns out that through the miracle of sloppy policy making and handouts to developers – in the form of a program called 421-A – working New York City residents have been giving up to 95% tax breaks (designed for low income housing) to billionaires buying $100 million dollar penthouse apartments!

And the kicker? A lot of the people buying these apartments are foreign investors just adding a practically tax free multi-million dollar item to their portfolio. They’ll never even live there! 

In a city that needs real affordable housing, it’s unconscionable that working people are paying for someone else’s luxury digs, so obviously it only seemed fair that some of these working and middle class people get to enjoy some of the fruits of the subsidy they paid for. Enter the floaties!

A crowd of protesters stands outside One57, a luxury apartment building
Photo from @ALIGNny via Twitter

 

Hundreds of New Yorkers arrived at One57  yesterday to take a dip in the pool.

A crowd of protesters, one holding a sign that reads "I'm here to enjoy the pool built with my tax dollars. No more #subsidizemypenthouse."
Photo courtesy of Real Affordability for All on Facebook

 

A protester holds a sign that reads "Pool with speakers? With my tax dollars? No way!!"
Photo from @RenataPumarol via Twitter

 

Outside of NYC, thousands of folks were using social media to stand in solidarity, uniting under the hashtag #subsidizemypenthouse.

An internet meme featuring a photograph of a middle-aged person in a lavish fur coat. There is text overlaid on the top that says "# subsidize my penthouse" and text overlaid at the bottom that says "Can you feel the warmth of my tax abatements"?

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