Tags: IRS | Law Enforcement | Money | association | california | street | taxes

SF Elites Should Face Same Consequences as Middle Class

Image: SF Elites Should Face Same Consequences as Middle Class
Presidio Terrace Street in San Francisco, California. A couple in the state, Tina Lam and Michael Cheng, purchased the private cul-de-sac featuring several multi million dollar mansions, for $90,000 at public auction. The couple was able to purchase the street and common areas when the home owner's association defaulted on property taxes for the street. (Justin Sullivan/Getty)

Saturday, 02 Dec 2017 04:45 AM Current | Bio | Archive

I’m really glad gloating isn’t one of the seven deadly sins. If it were, I’d be in trouble. The Germans have a word for what I’m feeling right now, Schadenfreude, which is defined as deriving enjoyment from someone else’s misfortune.

The cause of my disreputable snickering originates in San Francisco, California. San Francisco is a leftist utopia much like Venezuela, only it hasn’t run out of other people’s money — yet. One particular hotbed of social justice and income inequality within the city are the houses in the cul-de-sac on Presidio Terrace Street. This is a tony neighborhood even by San Francisco's standards.

Redfin.com lists the least expensive recent sale price for a home as $3.56 million and the most expensive as $8.21 million. Residents on the opulent oval are so wealthy they even owned the street in front of their homes — at least they did until recently. And that’s what's so amusing.

When you own the street, you also owe the property taxes due on that street. Each year the homeowner’s association was on the hook for a punishing $14.00 in property taxes. I doubt that amount would cover the yearly staple budget for the association, yet the bill hasn’t been paid since the turn of the century, which is as far back as records go.

The Associated Press (AP) reports that a perceptive "Silicon Valley software manager" by the name of Tina Lam saw the notice of an auction for back taxes. She snapped up the street and common areas for $90,000 in 2015.

I have an idea she didn’t buy the property as a public service to help the rich. And the rich feel the same way. The prospect of capitalism invading their neighborhood in the form of paying for parking or common area user fees is too dreadful to contemplate, so the sale has been tied up in court since the auction.

The city’s contention is tax bills were sent each year and no money was received in return — mostly because the homeowner’s association had not bothered to update its address. I don’t know about you, but when I change an address I inform creditors and I put a forwarding request in with the U.S. postal service. Evidently rich people don’t.

Now in court, lawyers for the wealthy homeowners that want their street back and whine that the city should have beat the bushes to find the new address and get that $14.00. I wonder why the bookkeeper for the association or whomever does the taxes didn’t notice the failure to pay.

Totally oblivious to the appearance of special rules for special people the homeowners have been pressuring the city to resend the perfectly legal sale and even convinced Sen. Dianne Feinstein to write a pressuring letter on their behalf.

One might be tempted to side with the homeowners and give them back their street — with a suitable settlement for the legal buyer — only this isn’t the first time their street has been sold! The association lost the street for failure to pay back taxes and went to court to get it back earlier — in 1985.

I think rules, regulations, and taxes should apply equally — to the rich and the poor.

Middle class residents don’t have the money for high-powered lawyers to tilt the court in their direction when they fail to live up to the rules. They just bear the consequences, which is what I think should happen in the case of the auctioned street.

Michael Reagan, the eldest son of President Reagan, is a Newsmax TV analyst. A syndicated columnist and author, he chairs The Reagan Legacy Foundation. Michael is an in-demand speaker with Premiere speaker’s bureau. Read more reports from Michael Reagan — Go Here Now.

Michael R. Shannon is a commentator, researcher for the League of American Voters, and an award-winning political and advertising consultant with nationwide and international experience. He is author of "Conservative Christian’s Guidebook for Living in Secular Times (Now with added humor!)." Read more of Michael Shannon's reports — Go Here Now.

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Middle class residents don’t have the money for high-powered lawyers when they fail to live up to the rules. They bear the consequences. That's what I think should happen in the case of an auctioned San Francisco street.
association, california, street, taxes
Saturday, 02 Dec 2017 04:45 AM
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