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Tuesday headlines PM

Apr 05, 2011 4:16 pm
IDA Decides on Greenport Crossings PILOT
Carole Osterink reports on a meeting of the Columbia County Industrial Development Agency on the morning of April 5 on whether to grant a Payment in Lieu of Taxes (PILOT) deal to Greenport Commons, a hotel/entertainment complex planned for Route 66 in Greenport. Developer Halbarwart Singh had asked for a 100 % tax abatement break for 20 years but was given a compromise where the project gets a 100 percent property tax abatement for 10 years; a $14,000 annual IDA administrative fee to be paid as taxes for the next five years; regular tax payments on a graduated percentage of the assessment--from 10 percent in the first year to 50 percent in the final year for the final five years. A representative from the county Chamber of Commerce asked that the IDA set and publish a standard for how it decides PILOT matters. IDA Chair Bruce Bohnsack replied that the agency would rather work things on a project by project basis.

County Waste acquired by Calif. company
The Albany Business Journal reports that County Waste and Recycling Service Inc., the region's largest locally owned trash hauler, has been acquired by Waste Connections Inc. of California.Terms of the deal were not disclosed. County Waste has $120 million in annual revenue and 460 employees and is headquartered in Clifton Park. It started taking over smaller trash companies in the past decade and currently serves 191,000 residential, commercial and industrial customers, including most of Columbia and Greene counties. State officials raided County Waste in mid-2008 after a whistle-blower alleged the company had cheated the town of Colonie out of at least $15 million in dumping fees from 2002-06. The company paid nearly $1 million to settle the state probe. Waste Connections, founded in 1997, has 2 million customers spread over 29 states. It’s the fifth-largest waste hauler in the nation, with $1.3 billion of revenue last year.

No need to expand Indian Point emergency planning zone, NRC says
Mid Hudson News Network reports that the Nuclear Regulatory Commission announced Tuesday, April 5 that it sees “no basis at this point” for expanding its "emergency planning zone" at the Indian Point plant in Westchester County, or any other US nuclear power plants. The NRC noted that current EPZ sizes have been in use since the 1970s and would assure that “prompt and effective actions can be taken to protect the public in the event of an accident” at a plant. The study was based on research showing “the most significant impacts of an accident would be expected in the immediate vicinity of a plant and therefore any initial protective actions, such as evacuations, or sheltering in place, should be focused there.” Meanwhile, a growing number of local, state and U.S. elected officials have started calling for greater oversight at Indian Point, as well as the plant's possible closure because of its being situated in the middle of the nation's greatest population center.

DEC stocking area streams

Jim Planck writes in The Windham Journal about some of the specifics of the state Department of Environmental Conservation's stocking of 26,920 brown trout in Greene County waters in April and May. Planck notes that the DEC plans to stock more than 2,300,000 “catchable-size” brook trout, brown trout, and rainbow trout in more than 300 lakes and ponds, as well as in roughly 3,000 miles of streams across the state. In addition, about 97,000 two-year-old brown trout, 12-13 inches in length, will also be placed into lakes and streams of the state, plus another 350,000 brook trout fingerlings in 342 of the state’s quieter, more remote lakes and ponds. He then goes on and lists which creeks and streams are getting stocked. Talk about a fisherman's friend! Trout season opened on April 1...