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Legislator Testa Urges State Legislators to Preserve Fund for Communities Affected by Indian Point Closure

Indian Point

On Monday, February 12th, at a joint meeting of the Committees on Legislation, Budget & Appropriations, Public Safety and Intergovernmental Services, Minority Leader John Testa added to the BOL Joint State Legislative Package an amendment to Governor Cuomo’s Executive Budget proposal to include additional funds for the Electric Generation Facility Cessation Mitigation Program. There is no contribution to this fund in the Governor’s Proposed NYS Budget.


The Cessation Mitigation Program was created to provide grant assistance to support local government entities, including counties, towns, cities, villages, school districts and special districts, impacted by reductions in the tax liability and/or PILOT payments owed by an electric generation facility subject to their taxing authority. The use of this fund will be critical to those negatively impacted by the closing of Indian Point.


The request is for additional funds to be added to the fund and dedicated to the communities of the Town of Cortlandt, Village of Buchanan and the Hendrick Hudson school district- because of their proximity to Indian Point, these entities receive a portion of the Payment in Lieu of Taxes (PILOT) funds from Entergy, the company that operates Indian Point. The PILOT funds will total more than $32 million in 2018, including $4 million to Westchester County. PILOT monies from Entergy for Westchester communities are slated to end or be reduced in 2021 when the plant stops operating.


Following the committee meeting Legislator Testa said, “I urge our delegation of State Legislators and Governor Cuomo to include funds for the Electric Generation Facility Cessation Mitigation Program in the 2018 state budget. In fact, with power generating facilities being closed upstate and Indian Point scheduled for closure in 2021, I believe this program should receive funding every year. This revenue is critical for our municipal partners in Buchanan, Cortlandt and Hendrick Hudson School District and affect the overall fiscal health of Westchester County. I would also like to see a specific budget line in the program dedicated to Cortlandt.” Testa added, “The Cessation Mitigation Program is scheduled to end in 2025. I would like to see the program renewed and made permanent. As long as there are power plants in operation, there will be a need to fund their eventual closures. We need to plan ahead and know our communities will be protected as we prepare for permanent local solutions and the decommissioning process.”

 

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