There’s plenty of evidence nationally and regionally that corporate handouts take money from public schools. Now, New York Focus dives deep into how local tax breaks to select businesses are costing Long Island’s Riverhead School District.
Some highlights from the piece:
- Riverhead IDA gave out $23 million to developers and other projects from 2014 to 2021.
- In 1999, the Long Island Aquarium’s developers approached the Riverhead IDA, saying they wanted to renovate the property in exchange for tax breaks. The aquarium received $3 million in tax breaks for 10 years—and has extended that deal twice in the past 24 years, now receiving about $1 million a year.
- One former Riverhead IDA member, asking whether the authority conducted cost-benefit analyses of tax breaks, was told “we don’t do that.”
As national watchdog Good Jobs First showed in an analysis published earlier this year, NY schools lost $1.8 billion to corporate tax breaks in 2021, far more than any other state.
Other NY corporate giveaway news:
- Local environmental advocates raised concerns about Micron’s planned chip fab in Clay on the outskirts of Syracuse (Spectrum News). NY may provide up to $5.5 billion in subsidies for Micron – though we find it extremely doubtful the mega-project will ever get that far.
- Lockport IDA (near Buffalo) approved $300,000 in tax breaks for a plastics factory that had previously submitted bogus documents and is heatedly opposed by environmental groups (Buffalo News).
- The state Public Service Commission rejected additional subsidies for offshore wind (Politico).
Another Subsidy Sheet shout-out from our intrepid friends at the Investigative Post. Thanks for all the great work you do!
If you got this from a friend, sign up here. This week’s Subsidy Sheet was written by Tom Speaker and edited by John Kaehny.
Please send questions and tips to tom [at] reinventalbany [dot] org. We look forward to hearing from you!