Keep track of funds

It’s just a basic fact of life: People have to be able to keep track of money.

Let’s hope the Fulton County Industrial Development Agency – and all our municipalities and government agencies – can do the same thing.

The IDA is trying to find out what happened to a $51,700 payment the agency says it never received.

The IDA in 1988 provided the 5.17 acres in Gloversville’s Crossroads Industrial Park to the Crossroads Incubator Corp. at no cost to use to construct an incubator building on the condition the payment for the lots would be deferred until the property was sold. The lot sale price in 1988 was $10,000 per acre, so the total price was $51,700.

While the CIC sold the property in 2007, it never made a payment to the IDA, the IDA maintains.

IDA Chairman Joseph Gillis deserves credit for not letting the IDA board simply write off the amount as an uncollectable debt – something the IDA’s auditing firm and attorney both advised.

The issue here is less about the money and more about the principle of the matter.

Realistically, the IDA board may have to accept the money is lost and move on. But it is at least worth taking the time to contact former IDA attorney J. Paul Kolodziej to seek documentation about the sale.

This is the sort of issue that hurts Fulton County when it comes to development. Businesses don’t want to hear the IDA is missing money.

All of our local governments and agencies should take note: Keep track of the money.