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YATES, SCHUYLER COUNTIES   ADVERTISEMENT

Paterson bills development agencies

YATES, SCHUYLER COUNTIES—The Finger Lakes Economic Development Agency was billed $25,945, or 4.7 percent of total revenues generated in 2008, by Gov. David Paterson.
Steve Griffin, CEO of the FLEDC, said the governor's bill to raise funds "makes no sense."  He added the governor gave no other reason for the bill, other than the state needs money.  All Industrial Develpment Agencies (IDA) throughout the state got the bill this month and are expected to pay by March 31.
While Griffin said FLEDC wouldn't have a problem paying this bill, he said it would hurt projects they are trying to start.  One such project the FLEDC is trying to launch is building a parking lot for the call center in Penn Yan.
Griffin added the governor is billing the FLEDC for funds they didn't keep.  He explained property tax payments were funneled through the FLEDC.  While they kept none of that money, the FLEDC was still billed 4.7 percent for those funds.  Griffin added the same thing happened with funds from the outlet trail project.  He said funds were only funneled through the FLEDC, but the governor still included that in their total revenue generated.
"We didn't plan on the state helping and we sure didn't plan on the state being the biggest challenge," said Griffin.
Schuyler County Industrial Development Center saw a smaller bill, $13,000.10.  Kelsey Jones, executive director of Schuyler County Economic Development Center, said they too could pay the bill without it being a huge impact on SCIDA.  However, he said his concerns are if this continues next year and if the percent increases.
"Does this get passed onto business?" he asked.  Jones explained because of this bill, fees may placed on development projects.
Jones added he has heard some legal challenges to the bill.  He explained the challenge is that the state should have notified the IDAs back in November, 2009.  Schuyler got their bill Thursday, Feb. 11.
 





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