With two new members, both Democrats, on the Bloomingdale Council, Mayor Jonathan Dunleavy is confident that a proposed Payment in Lieu of Taxes (PILOT) program with AvalonBay will move forward after it is introduced by title at Tuesday night's reorganization meeting.
The council will officially meet for the first time this year since new members were sworn in on Jan. 1. Included on the Tuesday meeting's agenda, in addition to dozens of appointments to various boards and committees, is the introduction of an ordinance for the borough to enter into the agreement with luxury apartment developer AvalonBay for a PILOT program. This is the second time the council will have voted on introducing an ordinance for the agreement, as the ordinance was introduced, then later rejected, last year. In 2012, the council majority also tried to repeal an ordinance creating a redevelopment area on Union Avenue, where AvalonBay is currently constructing a complex, but the repeal ordinance did not carry.
The PILOT program would grant the borough payments from AvalonBay over the next 30 years in lieu of the developer paying taxes. The municipality would recoup the bulk of the benefit from the payments, bringing in 95 percent of the money, a minimum of $550,000 per year, expected to grow by at least 2 percent per year, while the county would receive 5 percent. Aside from money from a land tax credit, the school district would not receive money from the developer for the length of the PILOT program.
Dunleavy said any council member will have the ability to raise concerns or questions they have about the program between Tuesday's meeting and a public hearing on the ordinance to be held on Jan. 22. But he believes the PILOT program will come to fruition.
"I'm confident it will move forward," he said.
Do you think the borough should move forward with a PILOT program with AvalonBay? Tell us your thoughts in the comments.