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Oswego County approves 5-year tax deal with FitzPatrick

Payne Horning

The Oswego County Legislature approved a five-year tax agreement plan Thursday with the FitzPatrick Nuclear Power Plant. Under the deal, FitzPatrick will pay the county, the Mexico School District and the town of Scriba $27.5 million through 2020 in lieu of traditional property taxes.

The deal resolves years of litigation with the plant's owners, who were seeking millions of dollars in back taxes that the plant has paid since negotiations broke down six years ago. The three government entities will get $12 million this year, about $5 million less than what FitzPatrick paid in 2015. As the financially struggling FitzPatrick plant begins decommissioning next year, a process that could take up to 60 years, the payments will decrease on a sliding scale each year to $2.5 million in 2020.

"By entering into this agreement with Entergy, the town of Scriba, Oswego County and Mexico Central School District avoid tax refunds for the years at issue in the tax certiorari proceedings in which the company alleged it was over-assessed," said Oswego County Legislative Chairman Kevin Gardner in a press release. 

There is a provision in the tax agreement that would increase the payments to $12 million per year if FitzPatrick continued operation.

Payne Horning is a reporter and producer, primarily focusing on the city of Oswego and Oswego County. He has a passion for covering local politics and how it impacts the lives of everyday citizens. Originally from Iowa, Horning moved to Muncie, Indiana to study journalism, telecommunications and political science at Ball State University. While there, he worked as a reporter and substitute host at Indiana Public Radio. He also covered the 2015 session of the Indiana General Assembly for the statewide Indiana Public Broadcasting network.