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Garden State Plaza Avoiding $17.1M in Annual Property Taxes, Union Reports

A report released by United Voice accuses Westfield Group of avoiding 60% of the taxes they should be paying in property taxes. Check out the report for yourself.

Australian labor union, United Voice, released a report Monday claiming that Westfield, owners of Garden State Plaza, is shortchanging the Borough of Paramus by $17.1 million in property taxes annually.

The report, titled “Westfield’s Two Faces: Community Consequences of Tax Avoidance,” shows the Garden State Plaza’s appraised value as $670.8 million.

The United Voice report states in an annual report, Westfield reported the worth of the Garden State Plaza to be $1.68 billion to their shareholders. Those numbers indicated that Westfield’s Garden State Plaza is only paying property taxes on 40 percent of the shareholder value. The difference in property taxes for the borough on $1.68 billion and $670.8 million, is $17.1 million.

The report goes on to show that 59 percent of property tax is designated to schools in New Jersey and that the average salary for a teacher is $48,101 annually in the state. According to those numbers, 209 teachers could be paid annually by the “tax avoidance.”

According a report by nj.com, Paramus and Westfield have negotiated an assessed value of $851 million after a recent $150 million expansion was added.

The full report, which claims that Westfield is avoiding taxes at many of their United States locations, is available in the above story.  

Bob December 10, 2013 at 08:26 AM
As a taxpayer in Paramus, and one's whose taxes went up after I improved our house, why would Paramus negotiate this? So who makes up the difference, other businesses and/or homeowners. Or would it just be excess, which could be used to save for a other purposes or a rainy day? Perhaps the Mayor can shed some light on this story?
John N December 10, 2013 at 03:48 PM
Seems kind of typical. With all of the business in this town we should be living virtually tax free. I have heard that Office buildings only pay taxes on occupied space here in town. How about doing something for the residents instead of shoving more business down our throats and increasing the traffic in the process?

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