Does the Suffolk IDA really need to give tax breaks to a Hamptons luxury hotel?
The idea behind an Industrial Development Agency is to provide tax incentives for companies to locate on Long Island in order to add jobs and revenue to the community. It is designed to make it attractive for a company to locate here when they otherwise would not.
It was used successfully in luring in Computer Associates and Canon, which brought with them thousands of high-paying jobs.
But, too often, we see various IDAs give breaks to car washes, parking lots or storage facilities, which take tax revenue off the rolls and provide limited low-paying jobs. More scrutiny is needed.
And greater justifications are needed for projects that probably would have been built anyway.
For instance, the Suffolk IDA just signed off for preliminary approval on a proposal from a developer seeking $700,000 in tax breaks to erect a luxury hotel in Westhampton. https://www.newsday.com/business/westhampton-beach-hotel-ida-tax-breaks-grassmere-inn-sdbd5x2y Developers predict it will provide 14 jobs.
Has anyone proven that the Hamptons have been wanting for tourists? The area has been bustling for many years now. Entrepreneurs are investing throughout the Hamptons because they see that money can be made.
It’s difficult to fathom why a developer would need to be incentivized to create a hotel in a tourist Mecca such as Westhampton.
Kudos to Nassau IDA for clawing back tax breaks after Amazon’s job prediction fell flat
Our Center has long called for claw back provisions that force IDA recipients to pay the taxes that were waived if indeed the predicted number of jobs created failed to materialize. That just happened, as Nassau held that Amazon must pay the county $11 million because their promise of 150 jobs never came about. https://www.newsday.com/business/amazon-tax-breaks-warehouse-jobs-g4vu3ulw
This type of follow-through and accountability is essential if the taxpayers are to have confidence in the system.