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Onondaga County closer towards approving $65 million tax break for distribution center

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Tom Magnarelli
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WRVO Public Media
A map of the proposed warehouse.

The Onondaga County Industrial Development Agency is closer to approving $65 million in tax breaks, over 15 years, for a proposed warehouse distribution center in the Town of Clay. Officials with Trammell Crow, the developer, highlighted the economic and community benefits of the project to the agency.

George Laigaie of Trammell Crow said the benefits include $28 million of payments in lieu of taxes, also known as a PILOT and 1,000 new jobs starting at $30,000 a year.

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Credit Tom Magnarelli / WRVO Public Media
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WRVO Public Media
A meeting of the Onondaga County Industrial Development Agency.

"Adding a thousand jobs to a neighborhood is generational," Laigaie said. "It doesn't happen anywhere that frequently."

The current tax rate on the property, the Liverpool Country Club, is around $50,000. But by next year, if the deal goes through, it would go up to $500,000 and then $5.5 million by the end of the PILOT. Trammell Crow doesn’t have a tenant for the project yet. But the expectation is the warehouse would be used by a logistics group, big-box user or e-commerce user.

Pat Hogan, chair of the Onondaga County Industrial Development Agency, said the revenue and jobs are significant.

"Twenty-eight more times revenue will come into the coffers of that school district out there in the Town of Clay, and the county Onondaga, because of this project, as opposed to what it was if it remained a golf course," Hogan said.

He said most of the agency's board members support the project.

"A thousand jobs would be big," Hogan said. "In history of project like this, they're sort of like concentric circles, go out from the project, all of a sudden, you see little machine shops and warehouses spring up." 

The agency could vote on the tax breaks on October 31. 

Tom Magnarelli is a reporter covering the central New York and Syracuse area. He joined WRVO as a freelance reporter in 2012 while a student at Syracuse University and was hired full time in 2015. He has reported extensively on politics, education, arts and culture and other issues around central New York.