Ground Zero Mosque in Tax Trouble
Developer Sharif El-Gamal owes $224K in property taxes
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 29, 2010 4:37 PM CDT
In this Aug. 24, 2010 file photo, Sharif el-Gamal, developer of the planned Cordoba House and mosque in lower Manhattan, comments on a speech by New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg in New York.   (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II, Pool, File)

(Newser) – Opponents of the “Ground Zero mosque” will likely have a field day with this one: Developer Sharif El-Gamal owes $224,270 in back taxes on the mosque site. El-Gamal’s company didn’t pay its tax bills in January or July, the New York Post reports. Though Con Edison owns half of the site, El-Gamal’s company is required to pay taxes on the entire property, meaning the tax bill could amount to a lease violation.

The Post also notes that MTA must approve the project before building can commence, because two subway lines run underneath the site—but El-Gamal’s spokesperson says the taxes are paid and the “subway lines do not pose a problem.”