Mayor Eric Adams pledged Tuesday to release his “tax information,” days after initially saying he was not committing to making his statements public.
“We are going to release tax information, without hesitation,” Adams said at an unrelated news conference in Staten Island. “Remember, I’m not required. We know, right? So let’s be clear on that.”
Adams did not elaborate on when his tax information would be released, if the tax records would be redacted or if the general public would be able to see them. Fabien Levy, the mayor’s spokesman, referred additional questions about the release to the mayor’s comments.
His reversal, which came a day after the annual filing deadline, came after Adams faced mounting criticism for failing to commit to releasing his taxes, which has been seen as a standard tradition his predecessors had adhered to en route to Grace Mansion. After initially being asked Friday if he would make a “firm commitment” to release taxes from him annually, the mayor responded with a “no.”
The release of tax returns, at least for Mayor Michael Bloomberg, came with stipulations. Bloomberg, a self-made tech billionaire, for example, allowed reporters to examine redacted records in person rather than the full filing during his years in office.
However, Mayor Bill de Blasio consistently released his statements shortly after Tax Day. In one case, de Blasio took a jab at then-President Donald Trump, who has notoriously failed to release his tax records.
At the state level, Democratic Gov. Kathy Hochul last week allowed reporters to examine her records as long as they can see them in person. Her 2021 tax return showed that she and her husband, a Buffalo Bills dealer, earned more than $900,000 in total income.
Adams must submit financial records to the Conflict of Interest Board, the government agency charged with ensuring that public officials and city employees operate in an ethical and legal manner. Adams’ most recent annual disclosure record submitted to COIB last year showed that she owned three properties in 2020 and received more than $49,000 for the veganism book she wrote.
This year’s disclosure forms are due next month.
Politico reported last year that Adams had withheld rental income from a brownstone he owned, which the mayor blamed on an accounting error.
His announcement came a day after he returned to City Hall after isolating himself to recover from COVID. A reporter from THE CITY he had asked the mayor upon entering the building if he would reconsider releasing his taxes.
“I can make a decision,” Adams said Monday.
The article has been updated to reflect that Mayor Adams has made a commitment to release tax information, though not explicitly his statements.