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Links roundup—economic development edition

November 25, 2011
  • A consortium of municipalities in Warren, Washington and northen Saratoga counties, along with the Greater Glens Falls Local Development Corp., the Glens Falls IDA, and the Glens Falls Housing Authority, has been awarded a $750,000 grant from the federal Department of Housing and Urban Development to develop a regional plan for housing, transportation, and economic development. [Post-Star]
  • About the Catskill Watershed Corporation, a public authority LDC that was established to help protect the water resources of New York City’s West of Hudson watershed, and its economic development programs, which are intended to support environmentally responsible businesses and to help offset impacts of the city’s watershed regulations. [Daily Freeman]
  • Not everyone agrees with the Court of Appeals’ recent decision on economic development spending. [Post-Star]
  • The New York City Independent Budget Office released its annual report of the city’s discretionary economic development spending. [NYC IBO]
  • A new report from ALIGN and the Coalition for Economic Justice finds that IDAs are wasteful and inefficient. [Public Authorities Blog]
  • Legislators in Greene County figured out that they should at least pretend to have a public vetting process for IDA board member appointees. [Daily Freeman]
  • The owners of a tourism center in Niagara Falls owe $1.7 million in outstanding property taxes and are in danger of being foreclosed on, but they say that the city has interfered with their operations by unfairly enforcing zoning rules and they’re now asking the Niagara County IDA for a 5 year tax exemption and an additional 10 year PILOT agreement so that they can renovate the building and make it profitable. The city is opposed to any tax breaks. As the mayor stated, “This impacts the average taxpayer. The county and the school district should be very focused on this. We, collectively, are owed $1.7 million. That’s got to be made up by somebody else.” [Niagara Gazette]
  • The Clarence IDA approved a sales tax break for a new restaurant, and board members defended their decision. “I think if you have an abandoned building and can put it back in use, personally I don’t think it matters if it’s a restaurant or a jewelry store or whatever you do with it,” said the IDA’s chairman. [Buffalo News]
  • The Supreme Court of New York County upheld a clawback provision in an ESDC grant made under the World Trade Center Small Firm Attraction and Retention Grant Program. “Here, plaintiff, [ESDC], has established that defendant received a $21,000.00 grant from it. Plaintiff has further established that as part of defendant’s eligibility to retain the grant, it had to maintain its business, during a specific five year period, within a particular geographic area. Plaintiff has also provided sufficient evidence to establish that defendant moved its business outside of the required area within the applicable five year period. Finally, plaintiff has established that the consequence of defendants non-compliance with the terms of the grant, there is an express obligation to return the grant monies previously provided to it.” New York State Urban Dev. Corp. v. Graham, Miller, Neandross Mullin & Roonan, LLC, 2011 NY Slip Op. 32976U (Sup. Ct., N.Y. Co. Nov. 10, 2011).
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