COUNTY OF SULLIVAN INDUSTRIAL DEVELOPMENT AGENCY
One Cablevision Center
Ferndale, New York 12734
(845) 295-2603 – telephone
(845) 295-2604 – fax
REGULAR MEETING MINUTES
Tuesday, August 12, 2014
1. CALL TO ORDER
Chairman Steingart called to order the regular meeting of the County of Sullivan Industrial Development Agency at approximately 10:06 am, held in the Legislative Committee Room at the Sullivan County Government Center, Monticello, New York.
II. ROLL CALL
Members Present- Members Absent-
Ira Steingart None
Edward Sykes Sean Rieber (arrived approximately 10:25 am)
Staff Present- Staff Absent-
Jennifer C.S. Brylinski, Exec. Director None
Jen Flad, VP Business Development
Walter F. Garigliano, Esq., Agency Legal Counsel
Tara Lewis, Garigliano Law Offices
Scott Samuelson, SC Legislature
Alan Sorensen, SC Legislature
Kitty Vetter, SC Legislature
Dan Briggs, SC Clerk
Dan Hust, Sullivan County Democrat
Andrew Beam, Times Herald Record
Not all attendees were present for the entire meeting.
III. APPROVAL OF MEETING MINUTES
Ms. Shaddock made a motion to approve the minutes of the July 8, 2014 regular meeting. The motion was seconded by Mr. Sykes, the Board voted and the minutes of the meeting were unanimously approved.
IV. BILLS AND COMMUNICATIONS
Ms. Loughlin made a motion to approve the revised schedule of payments. The motion was seconded by Mr. Siegel. The Board voted and the revised schedule was unanimously approved.
V. DIRECTORS REPORTS
Ms. Brylinski stated that the red meat processing facility project is moving along quickly. We are awaiting US Department of Commerce- EDA approval to issue a Notice to Proceed to Billman Ross and Associates for building construction. Today the bid notice for the mechanical, electrical and plumbing work will be published. The bid documents and specifications for the coolers and freezers are being developed. The Agency is working with USDA-Rural Development, the funding source for the coolers and freezers, to purchase this equipment before the September 30, 2014 grant deadline. Finally, staff plans to submit a reimbursement request to the US Department of Commerce-EDA in the coming days.
There was a brief discussion of the USDA-RD grant deadline of September 30, 2014. The coolers and freezers must be purchased by this date, and staff is working with USDA-RD to identify and comply with any other applicable requirements.
Jen Flad gave a brief presentation regarding Business Mentor NY, a new web-based mentoring initiative developed by Empire State Development. Through this program, business owners can get one-on-one guidance from experienced mentors in many fields.
VI. OLD BUSINESS
Attorney Garigliano discussed the RSS Realty – S&S Waverly project. The project did not make PILOT payments in a timely manner, so in 2009 the Agency entered into a PILOT mortgage agreement with the project. The project now wishes to terminate the Agency’s interest in the project, and has made payment to the Agency for the PILOT amounts due to the County, Town and Village of Liberty, and Liberty Central School District. Pending verification of the availability of funds, Attorney Garigliano asked the Board to authorize the Chairman to sign a satisfaction of mortgage and to execute a termination agreement. He noted that the check represents the last year that the project was not on the tax rolls, and that the property has been on the tax rolls and paying taxes since 2010. Ms. Loughlin made a motion to authorize Chairman Steingart to sign the satisfaction of mortgage and project termination documents. Mr. Siegel seconded the motion. Mr. Barbuti recused himself from the discussion, because he is the Town of Liberty Supervisor and the project is in the Town of Liberty. The Board voted and the resolution was approved with Mr. Barbuti abstaining for the reason described above.
VI. NEW BUSINESS
Ms. Brylinski referred the Board to two resolutions concerning Mogenavland, LLC. These would extend the sales tax exemption period for its locations in the Towns of Tusten and Bethel. The project has been receiving sales tax exemptions since 2009, and they have made many improvements at both locations.
Ms. Shaddock inquired whether the Board should grant a sales tax exemption for improvements made due to storm damage, if insurance would cover the damage. She also asked whether the subject storm damage was from recent storms, and whether it is typical to grant a sales tax exemption for the purchase of mattresses. She also requested to review the original project documents.
Attorney Garigliano replied that he will retrieve the documents from storage and provide them to Ms. Shaddock. He added that the purchase of furniture was within the original approved project description. He interprets “furniture” to include “mattresses.”
Attorney Garigliano stated that the owner is a taxable entity, and the operator is a not-for-profit corporation. As a taxable entity, the owner is entitled to depreciation deductions and other tax benefits. The owner is purchasing items, and leasing them to the operator.
At this point Mr. Rieber arrived at the meeting. He recused himself from discussion of this project, because he did valuation work at one of the subject properties, and left the room.
Ms. Shaddock made a motion to enter a closed attorney-client privileged session, to seek legal advice. Mr. White seconded the motion and the Board entered a closed session at approximately 10:25 am.
At approximately 10:58 am Mr. Rieber returned to the room. On a motion made by Ms. Loughlin and seconded by Mr. White, the Board came out of closed session at approximately 11:26 am.
Attorney Garigliano asked whether the Board feels that the purchase of mattresses is within the original project scope which mentions furniture, and therefore is an appropriate use of the sales tax exemption letter. The Board members agreed.
Mr. Sykes made a motion to approve the resolutions to extend the sales tax exemption period for the Bethel and Tusten facilities. Mr. Siegel seconded the motion, the Board voted and both resolutions were approved with Mr. Rieber abstaining for the reason described above.
Ms. Brylinski described David Appel’s request for additional loan financing for the Krispy Apple.The current balance on his original $75,000 loan is approximately $66,500. He seeks additional funding to bring the balance back up to $75,000. The additional loan proceeds will be used to purchase new kitchen equipment at the Krispy Apple. Mr. Rieber made a motion to approve the resolution. Ms. Loughlin seconded the motion. Ms. Shaddock clarified that this is not a line of credit, but rather a new loan of $75,000. The majority of the loan proceeds will be used to pay off the existing loan, and the balance will be used by to purchase kitchen equipment. The Board voted and the resolution was unanimously approved.
Ms. Brylinski began a discussion of the proposed Deb El Food Products, LLC project. Because the financial assistance exceeds $100,000, we are required by law to hold a public hearing. The environmental review is being undertaken by the Town of Thompson. Attorney Garigliano advised that the Agency can hold the public hearing and can induce with the project at this time. Once site plan is approved and the environmental review is complete, the Agency can close with the project. The Board agreed that the public hearing will be held on Tuesday, September 9, 2014 at 9:30 am.
Chairman Steingart asked the Board to set a public hearing with respect to the application of Concord Associates, LP, Concord Kiamesha, LLC, Concord Kiamesha Casino, LLC and Concord Kiamesha Hotel, LLC to the Agency for financial assistance for the Mohegan Sun at the Concord project. Attorney Garigliano stated that the applicant would like the public hearing to be held later in August. The Board agreed that the public hearing will be held on Monday, August 25, 2014 at 6:00 pm, location to be determined.
Chairman Steingart asked for a resolution authorizing an agreement with Gramercy Communications LLC to develop a presentation to the NYS Gaming Facility Location Board. He stated that Wilson Elser recommended Gramercy, an Albany area advertising firm, for help with development of the presentation. Legislative Chair Scott Samuelson will deliver the presentation on September 23. The Board discussed the importance of this effort and the benefit of using an outside firm who can look objectively at the information. Mr. Siegel made a motion to approve the resolution. Ms. Loughlin seconded the motion. The Board discussed the scope of work. The Agency will retain Gramercy for three months, and deliverables include press releases, advertising, handouts, and a video presentation. Attorney Garigliano stated that he has learned that applicant presentations are of utmost importance to the Gaming Facility Location Board, followed closely by presentations by the head of government of the host community. Ms. Loughlin asked whether there is a designated working group to assist Gramercy with the presentation. Chairman Steingart replied that working group members will include IDA Board members and heads of County agencies and departments. The Board voted and unanimously approved the resolution.
Attorney Garigliano reminded the Board that on June 25, 2014, the Sullivan County Community College Dormitory Corporation refinanced its dorm project. At the time of the closing, there was a possible requirement that the SCCCDC put $100,000 in an escrow account. To date it is still unknown whether that is a requirement. However, given that these funds, if needed, will be needed in the very near future, he asked if the Board would authorize Chairman Steingart to make this short-term loan if SCCCDC does not find other funding. He noted that the escrow requirement stems from a dispute, and the escrow funds must be held until the dispute is resolved. Ms. Shaddock made a motion to approve the resolution authorizing Chairman Steingart to execute any and all documents required to make a loan to SCCCDC. Mr. Barbuti seconded the motion, the Board voted and the resolution was unanimously approved.
Chariman Steingart asked the Board and others present for their comments. Mr. Rieber suggested that the Agency explore developing signs to install at our project sites, to increase public awareness of its work and attract more project applicants. The cost will be minimal, and will be borne by the projects. The Board members supported this idea and asked Ms. Flad to work on it.
Star Hesse asked whether she could receive the meeting information via e-mail before each Board meeting in the future. Ms. Brylinski advised that she will e-mail the documents to Ms. Hesse. Ms. Hesse also thanked Ms. Shaddock for her questions and points during today’s meeting during the Board’s discussions.
Ken Walter suggested that the Schedule of Payments be incorporated into the meeting minutes. He asked for clarification regarding project documents that are in storage and those that are available in the Agency’s office and counsel’s office. He commented that Mr. Rieber stepped out for part of the closed session but returned before the closed session ended. He also asked how the public can see project applications, and was advised that project applications and related documents are posted online when they become available.
On a motion made by Mr. White and seconded by Ms. Loughlin, at approximately 11:56 pm the meeting was adjourned.
IDA VP, Business Development