Job creation too small to consider PILOT agreement in Potsdam
Tuesday, July 10, 2012 - 12:13 pm

To the Editor:

In regards to the Affinity Cottages project, I think our elected officials need to look closely, and think broadly about the overall economic effect that will be felt here. The use of these PILOT agreements by the IDA is intended to help build the local economy by creating jobs, increasing services and broadening the tax base, but this agreement fails to serve on almost every count.

This facility will create only six full time jobs after the initial construction phase. It ill add 300 very expensive rental units (beds) to a market that currently has just enough, but without increasing the number of students. It will pay only a very small fraction of the taxes owed, and will lock us into that low rate for ten years, or until the buildings are worn out.

Let’s do the math. The 300 beds rent for $700 per month, and are rented for a full 12-month lease. Every month $210,000 will leave our local economy, with the exception of the six low wage custodial positions. Every year, over 2.5 million dollars will leave this town, and fill an account in Buffalo. They will pay a bit under $300,000 in taxes. All tolled that’s a 2 million dollar drain on our local economy.

When PILOT agreement is made, each party needs to bring something to the table. Affinity Group brings only an empty bag.

Michael Greer, Potsdam