Articles filed under Taxes & Subsidies from New York
The Cattaraugus County Industrial Development Agency updated its eligible projects policy earlier this week in a way that could impact the proposed $455 million Alle-Catt Wind Farm. The IDA Board of Directors was already working under a 2018 directive from the Cattaraugus County Legislature not to grant tax breaks to large industrial turbine projects.
The action throws the project into limbo as the local tax reductions were considered critical for construction to move forward. However, the vote also represents a significant victory for many residents in the towns of Sanford and Windsor who had long fought the installation on aesthetic and environmental grounds. Despite the setback, Bluestone sponsors vowed to press on.
Tuesday night at the Niagara County Courthouse, opponents of the proposed Bear Ridge Solar project in Cambria/Pendleton showed their support of a county law denying property tax exemptions to local solar and wind energy generation projects. For Niagara County Legislator David Godfrey, Tuesday night's legislative battle over opting out of a state-authorized property tax exemption for solar and wind energy systems had nothing to do with going green.
“There is more to be told that the state energy policy makers would rather not be known. The article makes renewable energy look far better than it is. How, can hydropower, the only reliable and true renewable resource, be included in the percentage calculations of renewable generation? Wind is less than 2% at best, solar is about the same. So 17-18% of generated renewable power was hydro and only 1-2% from solar or wind. Also, solar and wind power cost five to six times more than hydro or nuclear or hydrocarbon power.
That would apply only to county taxes, but school and town boards have passed similar bans for specific projects. State law gives automatic property tax abatements to renewable energy developers, unless localities opt out.
Offshore wind power is the most expensive alternative-energy source, and Cuomo has boosted these projects’ costs by requiring union labor. To hide the bad news, NYSERDA has to play games. Maybe that’s why, as the Empire Center also reports, its officials have the highest average pay of any state authority.
The Board of Supervisors has voted to opt out of state tax exemptions for solar, wind, and farm waste energy systems. The board on Sept. 9 voted to approve a local law allowing Fulton County to “capture tax revenues” from the development of solar energy facilities and to ensure such facilities are “treated equally” with other commercial properties.
Both Fulton and Montgomery counties had shifted away from the full tax exemption offered by New York state in favor of Payment in Lieu of Taxes agreements in recent years. While PILOTS gradually phase-in full taxation of the land over a 15-year period, both counties have now abandoned that method of taxing renewable energy projects in favor of full-taxation.
“I felt giving this huge multi-million dollar company tax relief on the backs of our taxpayers is wrong.” The company “already receives subsidies from the government,” she added. Vickman said afterward, “They should pay their fair share of taxes.”
On Wednesday, the Steuben County Industrial Development Agency (IDA) held a public hearing to gather comments on a plan to deliver $11.6 million in tax breaks to the Baron Winds Project — a $304 million project of parent company Innogy destined to locate 69 turbines in the towns of Fremont, Cohocton, Dansville, Wayland and Avoca.
“The amount to be raised by taxes was $12,000 less than last year, but because of the windmill assessment [reduction], there wasn’t much we could do,” Jones said.
A group of residents from the town Henderson and a couple from the town of Hounsfield expressed their opposition of a possible payment-in-lieu-of-tax agreement for the Galloo Island Wind project to the Jefferson County Industrial Development Agency Thursday.
Lewis County residents should be on high alert in the years to come as the wind industry is in the process of gaining approval to build more wind farms across the county with little if any benefit to the taxpayers. The county leaders now in place are falling for it hook, line and sinker.
The reassessment of the windmills to $11 million from $25 million will reduce the town of Fenner’s total taxable assessed value by $13 million. This will definitely have an impact on the 2019 town budget and the town tax rate, although it is too early in the budget process to say exactly what that impact will be, Jones said.
This claim will go before a judge to determine the merits of the argument. A ruling in favor of the plaintiff would be a devastating blow to every municipality that hosts commercial wind facilities. And it would drastically reduce the already scant economic benefits that these projects yield once the construction phase is complete.
The owners of Maple Ridge Wind Farm are seeking to have the assessments on the project’s Lewis County properties reduced by hundreds of millions of dollars. ...Ms. McNichol said the county, as lead agency, the municipalities and school districts will now consider Flat Rock’s proposed assessments and likely counter them in what may become “a battle of experts” in court. “It comes down to our appraisal versus their appraisal, our experts versus their experts,” Mr. Piche said. “At the end of the day, the judge is probably going to go right down the middle.”
The IDA will submit a letter responding to a interrogatory letter from the developer, Apex Clean Energy, sent to the state Department of Public Service staff regarding a potential PILOT for its 108.9 megawatt wind farm. “It’s really pretty straightforward,” said agency Chairman David J. Converse. “It’s basically telling them no decisions have been made yet.”
A payment in lieu of tax agreement won’t be reconsidered despite changes to wind turbine heights within the Ball Hill Wind Energy Project in the town of Villenova.
Jefferson County, responding to a document filed with Public Service Commission staff by Apex Clean Energy, has clearly set forth its expectations on any payment-in-lieu-of-taxes agreement reached on the proposed Galloo Island wind project.
Cattaraugus County lawmakers will vote Wednesday on a resolution urging the Industrial Development Agency not to grant a payment in lieu of taxes (P.I.L.O.T.) agreement for projects like the Alle-Catt Wind Farm. ...The resolution is advisory in nature, urging the IDA not to grant a P.I.L.O.T. for wind energy projects larger than 5 megawatts.