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County Readies for Court Fight over FitzPatrick’s Taxes

OSWEGO, NY – The Oswego County Legislature hunkered down Thursday night passing resolutions in readiness of a legal battle with the owner of one of the Nine Mile Point nuclear power plant owners.

The county, town of Scriba and the Mexico Academy and Central School District are presently involved in a tax certiorari litigation concerning the James A. FitzPatrick Nuclear Power Plant owned by Entergy.

Despite considerable efforts over the past few years, the municipalities have been unable to negotiate a tax agreement with Entergy, according to Legislator Jack Proud.

The town and district have already or will soon be retaining the law firm of Hacker Murphy to jointly defend this litigation on behalf of their respective taxing jurisdictions; the county opted to retain their services as well.

The firm possesses the requisite resources and expertise and experience to defend the municipalities and is willing to undertake the defense, according to the resolution.

The municipalities will receive a legal bill every 30 days as activity in the file warrants. They will also be provided monthly statements detailing the services rendered.

And, regarding the same matter, the county approved a professional services contract for appraisal and related technical services to George E. Sansoucy and Cost Plus Consulting.

The county also agreed to enter into an intermunicipal agreement with the town and district

Each shall be responsible for the following pro rata share of the total invoices pertaining to the proceedings and related negotiations until the agreement is either amended or canceled:
Town of Scriba – 4%
Mexico Academy and Central School District – 30.5%
County of Oswego – 65.5%.

The legislators also approved a resolution authorizing the execution of an agreement allowing Nine Mile Point Nuclear Station to use Hanger K at the Oswego County Airport.

The county is home to three nuclear power plants and cooperates with the licensing agencies and plant owners regarding emergency preparedness and response, according to Legislator Robert Hayes who introduced the resolution.

The Joint News Center is part of the emergency response plan and is located next to the airport.

Nine Mile Point units I and II have previously used the airport for drills and training.

The legislature voted to grant the nuclear plants “the right to utilize the main office and Hanger K at the airport as an alternative emergency response and off-site assembly area in the event that the onsite emergency facilities at Nine Mile Point Nuclear Power Station cannot be safely accessed, and in the interim to store such equipment and supplies, and to conduct such training exercises, at the airport as may be necessary to facilitate such use.”