Update: Governor Hochul vetoed this bill on December 29th, 2021.
Governor Kathy Hochul VIA EMAIL
New York State Capitol Building
Albany, NY 12224
December 28, 2021
Re: Please sign S.1634/A.795 Equalizing Fees Charges by County and Municipal IDAs
Dear Governor Hochul,
We urge you to sign S.1634/A.795, which we believe is a common sense way to stop businesses seeking public subsidies from “fee shopping” between local and county Industrial Development Authorities (IDAs). Currently, some businesses seeking IDA subsidies attempt to pit taxpayers in neighboring communities against each other in a race to the bottom that the public always loses.
In December 2019, Senator Skoufis, the bill’s senate sponsor, and Chair of the Senate Committee on Investigations and Government Operations, published a comprehensive report that identified numerous problems with the accountability of New York’s public authorities, including local Industrial Development Authorities. At the time, Reinvent Albany endorsed the report’s findings and its dozen or so recommendations — which included this bill.
Ironically, neither Reinvent Albany nor NYPIRG took the time to write memos of support for this bill because we thought it was such obviously good public policy and such a basic reform that it would sail through the legislature and be signed by the governor without controversy. Unfortunately, we were alerted by the bill’s sponsors that some localities and groups representing local IDA’s have asked the governor to veto this bill.
This legislation offers a solution to one of the issues surrounding the effectiveness and accountability of IDAs. We urge you to approve this S.1634/A.795.
New York Public Interest Research Group