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NCIDA approves 'safety valve' for PILOT modification for AES Eastern Energy

by jmaloni
Wed, Feb 9th 2011 11:05 am

The Niagara County Industrial Development Agency board of directors today approved a modification to AES Eastern Energy's current payment in lieu of tax, or PILOT. The modification was approved to provide stability to the largest taxpayer in Niagara County, which is experiencing difficult economic times in the energy industry. A stipulation of the PILOT modification entails that if market conditions in the energy sector return to 2009 levels that the modified PILOT payments also would return to the original amounts, providing a safety valve for both the company and the taxing jurisdictions.

"I want to thank our board for its leadership on this extremely difficult issue. We have to protect the county's largest taxpayer, but we need to strike the right balance to protect the taxing jurisdictions, and we believe the modification does just that," said Henry M. Sloma, chairman, NCIDA. "We approved the PILOT modification as a safety valve in order to provide tax stability for the company, the taxing jurisdictions and the taxpayers."

AES Eastern Energy, the operator of a 650-megawatt, coal-fired electric power generating station facility in the Town of Somerset, requested the NCIDA to modify its 2010 PILOT agreement between the company and Niagara County, the Barker School District and the Town of Somerset. It was intended to reflect the payment schedule of $14.8 million for year one, $14.3 million for year two and $12.8 million for each of the remaining three years.

The agency also accepted an application of assistance from Jai Devi Inc., which plans to renovate the vacant former Heritage Manor Nursing Home on Buffalo Avenue in Niagara Falls into an 11,000-square-foot, 32-room boutique hotel. The project investment is $450,000 and will create five new full-time jobs within two years. The application requested a 10-year standard commercial PILOT, sales tax exemptions and mortgage recording tax exemption.

An application of assistance from DOJO LLC, a real estate holding company for Wheatfield Pediatrics, which has been serving the community since 2000, also was accepted. Due to growth, the practice plans to invest $623,360 in constructing a 3,500-square-foot addition to its building at 2890 Niagara Falls Blvd. The application of assistance requests a 10-year standard commercial PILOT, sales tax exemptions and mortgage recording tax exemption. The expansion will create four full-time and three part-time jobs.

Lastly, the NCIDA also approved a sales tax exemption for Kissling Interests LLC for its $15 million redevelopment of the historic Remington Rand Building in North Tonawanda.

HT Productions Inc., an Ontario-based manufacturing company that focuses on corrugated paper products, plans to purchase a 50,000-square-foot building on Ridge Road in the Town of Lewiston. The total investment of the project is approximately $910,000 and will create 10 full-time and four part-time jobs within the first two years of operation. The company received a 15-year industrial PILOT, sales tax exemptions and mortgage recording tax exemptions. The building is currently vacant.

Niagara Falls Hospitality Inc., which purchased the closed Captain's Cove Bar and Restaurant at 7726 Niagara Falls Blvd., plans to demolish the existing structure to make way for a planned 75-room Microtel. The cost of the project is approximately $4.3 million and will create 10 full-time jobs and six part-time jobs. The company received a 10-year standard commercial PILOT, sales tax exemptions and mortgage recording tax exemptions.

Vishal Corporation Inc. has purchased the Sunrise Inn at 6335 Niagara Falls Blvd., with plans to demolish the building to make room for a 66-room Ramada Inn. The total investment is approximately $4.9 million and will create 10 full-time jobs and six part-time jobs. The company received a 10-year standard commercial PILOT, sales tax exemptions and mortgage recording tax exemptions.

Fredrick Piwko, M.D., received a 10-year commercial PILOT, sales tax exemptions and mortgage recording tax exemption for his plans to construct a new 2,600-square-foot medical office building on Lockport-Olcott Road in the Town of Newfane. The total investment of this project is approximately $462,000 and will create two new jobs and retain its current four full-time and two part-time employees. 

About the Niagara County Industrial Development Agency

The Niagara County Industrial Development Agency is a not-for-profit public benefit corporation established in 1972 by the Niagara County Legislature. Under the provisions of the New York Industrial Development Agency Act, the NCIDA is empowered to actively attract and develop economically sound commerce and industry, thereby fostering job opportunities, general prosperity, and economic welfare for all residents of Niagara County. The NCIDA utilizes a variety of financing, tax incentive, and job training programs to induce economic growth. Many of these programs can be employed individually to meet a specific need or assembled to form a comprehensive development package.

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