OSWEGO, NY – At a special meeting of the Oswego County Legislature on Thursday evening, lawmakers amended Local Law No. 4 of 2001.
In 2001, the local law granted nuclear power electric generating facilities in Oswego County exemptions from taxation, special ad valorem levies and special assignments until 2016, according to Phil Church, county administrator.
“The amendment changes those exemptions so that they expire with the current tax agreement, rather than 2016,” Legislator Jack Proud explained. “This changes the window from 2016 to 2010. It preserves (the taxing jurisdictions’) option of placing the facilities back on the tax rolls if we so deem it necessary, if a new fair tax agreement can’t be reached.”
The resolution passed 20-0-2. Legislators Mike Kunzwiler and Jim Oldenburg, employees of the plants, abstained.
Three legislators, Margaret Kastler, Milferd Potter and Shawn Doyle were absent. Doyle was attending a meeting in Henderson regarding the wind farms; and as an employee at Nine Mile, he would also have abstained from voting.
The county, as well as the town of Scriba and the Oswego City School District, are negotiating with Entergy and Constellation regarding the tax status of the nuclear power plants.
The county now has the option of agreeing on a new Payment In Lieu Of Taxes pact, or placing the plants back on the tax rolls.
Legislators had also considered passing two resolutions, one in support of Fort Ontario and the other supporting Selkirk Shores.
However, according to Barry Leemann, chair of the legislature, they were unable to do so.
Thursday was a special meeting, called to deal with the local law issue. Under the rules of the legislature, he explained, only what’s on the agenda for a special meeting can be acted on.
The county will vote on the resolutions at its March meeting, he said.