News & Insights

SPRING 2019 IDA UPDATE

Last updated on March 22nd, 2019

The County of Sullivan Industrial Development Agency (IDA) currently works with over 50 local companies, assisting them through the provision of performance-based incentives.

In exchange for these incentives, companies commit to develop and expand their businesses, furthering the IDA’s goals of facilitating private sector investment and generating new jobs here in the County.

What is a PILOT and how does it work
Fifty of these companies receive a partial abatement of their real estate taxes to assist in their development and expansion.

Instead of paying taxes directly, these companies make annual payments in lieu of taxes (PILOTs) to the IDA, and the IDA distributes 100 percent of these payments to the County, town, village if applicable, and school district.

Note the IDA only abates a portion of the new real estate taxes that result from improvements to project properties.

The distribution of IDA PILOT money to the local taxing jurisdictions has increased steadily and dramatically over the past decade.

In 2010 the IDA disbursed approximately $3.86 million in PILOT money throughout the County. In comparison, in 2019, the IDA will collect and disburse roughly $6.6 million in PILOT payments.

This total includes payments to the County in an amount of over $1.63 million, payments to the towns and villages in an amount of over $1.2 million, and payments to the school districts and libraries in an amount of over $3.77 million.

Among the projects making the largest PILOT payments this year are Resorts World Catskills Casino in the Town of Thompson, the Millennium Pipeline located in several towns in the western and southern portions of the County, Kohl’s Distribution Center in the Town of Mamakating, Ideal Snacks in the Town and Village of Liberty, and the Villa Roma in the Town of Delaware.

These five projects alone represent over $3.8 million in PILOT payments to the County, towns, villages, and school districts in which they are located.

The IDA does not abate special district taxes – rather, all IDA projects pay these taxes in full, directly to the taxing jurisdictions.

The dramatic increase in PILOT payments over the past decade is due in part to a handful of new projects like Resorts World Catskills, which make very large PILOT payments.

It is also due to the fact that many IDA projects are nearing the end of their agreements, which means their tax abatements are decreasing and their PILOT payments are increasing, as they approach a zero abatement and the return of their properties to the tax rolls.

Employment and IDA Projects
IDA projects do more than add to the tax base, though. Our projects report over 5,100 full-time equivalent employees working on-site for 2018, with many projects far exceeding the employment goals set forth in their agreements with the IDA.

Notably, projects employing far more people than expected include Nonni’s, Ideal Snacks, Rolling V, Crystal Run Healthcare, and the Villa Roma.

Projects that fail to attain their employment goals must make penalty payments to the IDA, and these penalties are distributed to the taxing jurisdictions.

We are happy to report that most of our projects are fulfilling and exceeding their employment obligations, and instances of underemployment are rare.

How the IDA works
The IDA always strives to promote sound economic development that assists businesses and brings benefits to the local communities.

Our Uniform Tax Exempt Policy includes twelve targeted programs to foster the growth of diverse industries including manufacturing, tourism, retail, agriculture, the arts, community solar, and more.

Apart from these performance-based tax incentives, the IDA also offers loan and lease financing programs, and we currently administer approximately twenty active loans and leases.

As Sullivan County’s economy continues to pick up steam, the IDA looks forward to welcoming more new businesses and continuing to help our existing businesses expand.

 

By, Jennifer M. Flad
Executive Director, County of Sullivan Industrial Development Agency