Council OKs PILOT deal for Overlook

GLOVERSVILLE – The Common Council unanimously approved the Payment-in-Lieu-of-Taxes agreement for the Overlook Ridge Apartments, though the city attorney told them changes were made that were different than what the city had negotiated.

City Attorney Anthony Casale previously said Overlook wanted a 30-year PILOT agreement while the city wanted a 15-year deal. As a compromise, he said, they agreed that upon the expiration of the 15-year deal, if the existing mortgages on the property remain in place, the PILOT agreement could be renegotiated.

However, Casale said the updated PILOT agreement the council received Tuesday states if the mortgage remains in place it will automatically be extended another 15 years without further negotiations.

“The agreement you have before you is not what had been contemplated,” Casale said. “We do need some sort of action on this because the tax roll needs to go to the county on April 1 and this is our last meeting.”

With the deadline quickly approaching, 6th Ward Councilman Wrandy Siarkowski said he felt the deal left the council with no other option other than approving it.

“I hate saddling future councils into a 30-year agreement,” Siarkowski said. “And, as it appears right now, our back is up against the wall, and I don’t appreciate it.”

Members of the council asked city Assessor Joni Dennie what was in the city’s best interest regarding the PILOT.

She said it would be better for the city to accept the PILOT because this year. The deal would bring about $11,700 in revenue to the city, whereas if the council were to kill the deal, the development would only provide the city about $9,800 based on the assessment.

Dennie also said if the payment isn’t locked into place, Overlook could choose not to propose another PILOT in the future and the assessed value could go down based on Overlook’s revenue in a given year.

“They are never going to show that much profit,” Dennie said. “I don’t think you are ever going to see a profit-loss statement that is going to have them show that much of a profit where the assessment is going to go up.”

According to the proposed agreement, the city will exempt the property from local and municipal taxes, other than assessments for local improvements.

The company will make annual payments of $28,000 per year, the agreement said. The payments will begin this year and will increase annually, but not in excess of 3 percent per year. The PILOT payments will cover all local and municipal taxes and will be shared by the taxing jurisdictions on the same basis property taxes would be shared if it were fully taxed.