No movement on Middleburgh grocery store


By David Avitabile

Talks continue, but there is no settlement in sight for the tax break agreement for Middleburgh's grocery store.
A public hearing had been scheduled for Tuesday night, but it was canceled.
The hearing on the payment in lieu of taxes, or PILOT, had been scheduled for Tuesday at the village.
"Although negotiations are still ongoing, there has been no final agreement between all the jurisdictions and the developer," Ron Filmer of the Industrial Development Agency announced Monday, "therefore we have postponed the public hearing."
The village and town of Middleburgh had approved a 20-year PILOT last month for the new store and condominiums but the county and school board have yet to vote on the agreement.
The PILOT resolution was on the school board agenda for Wednesday but was removed.
Board President Pam Standhart explained that the item was removed due to ongoing negotiations with the town, village, county, and school district, and the developers.
Officials from the IDA have been working with representatives from the village, town, county, and school, as well as the developers of the proposed project on a shorter payment in lieu of taxes.
The agreement could also have some different percentages.
The IDA has been acting on behalf of the four agencies to contact the developers to try to work out a new agreement, Mr. Filmer said.
The initial 20-year tax agreement received approval from the Middleburgh town board in a split vote on April 14 and from the village board last month. The plan never went before the school or county boards.
Faced with an April 15 contract deadline on two properties, developers decided to halt the project, at least for now.
The county board would not be able to vote on the PILOT until its meeting on May 20. If all goes well, Mr. Filmer said the IDA could approve a PILOT within two weeks of the county meeting.
According to the original proposal, for the first five years the developers would continue to pay a total of $2,200 a year, with no loss or gain to the school, village, town, and county.
For years six through 10, the owners would be paying the current $2,200 plus five percent of the assessed value of the buildings, which are still to be determined.
The payments for years 11 through 15 would be the current $2,200 plus 10 percent of the assessed value of the buildings and for years 16 through 20, the payments would be $2,200 plus 20 percent of the assessed value.
After the end of the 20-year agreement, the property would be assessed at 100 percent of the value.