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Finance group will review village options

YATES COUNTY--The Yates County finance committee agreed to form a committee for further discussions with the village of Penn Yan on the sharing of occupancy tax revenues throughout the county during their meeting Tuesday, Sept. 3. The committee will consist of committee Chairman Tim Dennis, County Chairman Taylor Fitch, Legislator Doug Paddock and County Administrator Sarah Purdy. The purpose of the committee will be to not only discuss sharing occupancy tax revenues with the village of Penn Yan, but  also to discuss how to implement similar practices among all townships in the county.
This action comes in response to a letter issued by the village of Penn Yan requesting the shared revenue after representatives from the village had attended the finance committee meeting last month. Penn Yan Mayor Bob Church said they were told the village needed to put something in writing to bring before the committee, so they agreed upon sending the letter to the legislature. Church said since the last meeting, he feels it is “pretty obvious” there will be two new hotels built in the village of Penn Yan in the near future, and the potential for tax is very good. He said it is time the parties sat down and got the issue resolved.
Dennis said the letter requested action by the legislature by Monday, Sept. 16, but he sees no way that would be possible to achieve. Church replied saying it was not a hard date, but rather a measure to ensure the process does not drag out.
Village Trustee Michael Christensen said the village has infrastructure issues with new developments, with the village providing all the municipal and emergency services, yet receiving none of the financial benefit. He said the village’s operating revenue for the most part comes from property taxes, and “mere inflation drives the budget up.” Trustee David Reeve said there is no connection between business and the village, and many citizens do not realize this fact.
When the question was asked of the legislature, Paddock said he was in favor of sitting down as a group and discussing the framework for sharing additional occupancy revenue. Legislator Mark Morris said he would be in favor of sharing it on an incremental basis from the growth of new businesses. Fitch said it needs to be fairly done across all municipalities with all towns involved in the process.





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