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Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Tax Exempt

The Hamburg Town Board rescinded the action asking the state to look at taxing the agricultural society's property [click here for article].  In a nutshell Supervisor Walters, who voted against the original resolution, and Betty Newell of the Chamber of Commerce believe that taxing the property will equate to the loss of jobs and surrounding businesses because the Casino will "go dark." It appears that Mrs. Newell should do some research on the casino concept.  You see, Mrs Newell, casinos exist to bring people into the facility and not to support the surrounding community.  Casino's want gamblers to get into debt and spend every drop of their income and borrowing inside of their facility.  If you don't understand this concept, visit Niagara Falls and drive up and down Pine Ave, it is a ghost town.   Still not convinced, head down to Salamanca.   Additionally, most of the jobs created in the Casino are filled by people who do not live in the Hamburg Community.  One needs only to drive down South Park Ave and noticed the hordes standing, waiting for the bus to take them back down South Park Ave. to the City of Buffalo.  This raises other questions.  Why is the bus stop on South Park Ave?   Why doesn't the Fairgrounds give the nod to the NFTA to pull into the facility so the alleged scores of gamblers and workers can be dropped off at a reasonably safe place?  Is this the same kind of issue that existed with the Galleria Mall?   I propose that taxing the Fairgrounds won't change their business model one bit, but it may create an equitable distribution of the tax burden.  Wouldn't the homeowner like to share the taxes with the millions going into the pockets of the Agricultural Society, the New York State Gaming Authority and Delaware North Companies.

It seems as though the Fairgrounds is not alone in their acceptance of corporate welfare.

If you do a little research into the Hamburg Industrial Development Agency or HIDA [click here to access the HIDA site] they give tax exemptions on county, town, village and school taxes to seemingly every business that claims they will create new jobs (FTE) [click here for annual report and scroll down to see the companies getting tax exemptions].  That shifts the tax burden from the business recipient onto the homeowner (corporate welfare).  Most of the companies benefitting from HIDA tax exemptions are located in Frontier.   Although I question the tax exemption of some corporations, I do believe the HIDA does some great things.  I look around Hamburg and I see improvements everywhere, especially in the Village; JP Fitzgeralds Bar and Restaurant recently applied to the HIDA.  However, some of the businesses receiving tax exemptions need a second look.  It is interesting that Rubber Stamp Board (RSB) member Matthew Dils sits on this agency's board.  I'm sure he rubber stamps everything as a member of this agency's board and is so willing to transfer the tax burden from business to the homeowner.  [click here to review the minutes from the meetings and read who is applying for enhancement money and tax exemptions].

17 comments:

Diana said...

Now your expertise encompasses economic development?

Anonymous said...

did you get The Quest info? it took me a half hour to type and then the page went dead again when i sent it. I type slow hope it went through. :)

Concerned Hamburger said...

Hello Diana, You have no idea on the depths of my knowledge. Robert Moses was my great uncle and as such, I have an armchair interest in urban development and what has morphed into corporate welfare. Perhaps Diana, you may like to read some of the white papers I have written on IDAs? As a child, I visited the 1964/65 Worlds Fair in Flushing Meadow with Robert Moses, and inherited all of his personal diaries. Yes, Diana, I know about Economic Development. You know, IDAs are a failure, and they are squandering your hard earned money. HIDA is no different.

Anonymous said...

So you wrote your whole blog post based on what you read in the newspaper? Betty Newell and Supervisor Walters said much more than was reported in the paper, but you wouldnt know that because you were not there.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous 8:33, enlighten us to the remarks of Betty Newell and Supervisor Walters. I do not doubt that Mrs Newell had a great deal to say, she likes to hear herself talk.

fixed income taxpayer said...

Speaking of economic development... I doubt if you tax the casino revenues it would move. Lets get real, the hoops that have to be jumped through to get a casino opened in a family centered community with free parking. I say Tax them.

Diana it does not take a genius to follow this simple concept. The casino will not move. It is far to difficult for them to move anywhere else. Look what happened when a casino tried to open in Lancaster. They cannot move north because they cannot compete with Niagara Falls, they cannot move south because of Salamanca. we know they cant move to Transit road. So genius Diana where would they go if we taxed them? I have to pay my fair share why shouldn't they?

Or would you prefer just keep raising the taxes of the Village residents. The president of the school board said last year its just 100 dollars of a tax increase on a hundred thousand dollar home. Well one hundred dollars is significant to me. Maybe not to him.

My taxes are four times higher than they were thirty years ago and two times higher than they were 10 years ago. So Diana keep putting the burdens on the small town taxpayer. Then when teachers are laid off blame the teachers. Get a clue.

I will never vote for Steven Walters again because of this. They have a simple answer and refuse to entertain the option.

Get rid of them all.

Anonymous said...

Its a crime that the Native Americans may have to collect taxes for the state, while people like supervisor Walters act like fools.

M WHITEHEAD said...

IS THE RSB ASLEEP. SELL THE GARAGE AT THE CORNER OF LEGION, YOU FOOLISHLY BOUGHT IT IN 2006 (ERIE COUNTY TAX RECORD), PETITION YOUR PARTNERS IN CRIME THOS MOSES ET AL IN THE VILLAGE TO HAVE IT REZONED LIGHT COMMERCIAL/RETAIL, AND SELL THE PROPERTY, AND CREATE A TAX BASE. PUT THE TOOLS AND TRUCKS OVER BEHIND THE MIDDLE SCHOOL. DUH!

Anonymous said...

Whitehead that may be a catch 22. Its a garage to work on the trucks, equipment, etc.. That shop fixes things daily and is set up well. To build another behind the Middle School would cost some money. How much is beyond my knowledge...

Anonymous said...

The Town and School Boards should get behind closed doors and do some good. Both sides could get re-elected or at least help us out. And the village should get involved too if its their issue and not the towns. If you live in the village, do you pay town taxes?

Anonymous said...

Closed meetings are part of the problem.

Anonymous said...

Ok, how about open meetings?

Anonymous said...

No Taxes! Fix your own problems.

Anonymous said...

Move the garage on Legion Drive. Hamburg needs to come up creative solutions to their problems.

server said...

If the fairgrounds and the casino are so great for the community, why would the romanellos restaurant across the road be suffering. I work as a waitress their and they are hurting. I am getting my Associates as an adult, so I am not to smart when it comes to business, but is seems to me that it has stolen business from mr. romanello who has been trying to keep us all working. i say tax the casino and give the small business owner a level playing ground. just sayin, it seems like a smart idea.

Anonymous said...

Mr. R has one of the best establishments in town, take your hard earned cash and eat, laugh, drink and be merry. He collects taxes as due B&B Brunner and has a vested interest in the Town. Your not going to get rich at the casino, better chance of going broke, and Deleware North doesnt care about your meals. Buy from local Business owners who pay taxes like us.

Anonymous said...

Last comment, I cant agree with you more. Buy local. Tax the Fairgrounds. You cant have both because the tax free fairgrounds will put Mr R out of business. Do you get this concept?