Conor Eckert, Executive Director of the Town of Montgomery IDA Tuesday announced that the IDA plans to move forward with updating their Uniform Tax Exemption Policy (UTEP). By law, every IDA must have a UTEP policy, which establishes the period of exemptions and percent of exemptions among other things. This is the first time that the UTEP has been updated since 2008. The draft UTEP will create incentives to attract more cutting-edge projects including an adaptive reuse policy that will focus on brining older vacant buildings back to life.
“We’re excited to take this major step towards bringing our vision for smart growth and strategic development to fruition,” said Eckert “This updated UTEP will serve as a tool to attract more cutting-edge, innovative companies and development to the Town of Montgomery.”
Before the UTEP can be adopted, it must be sent to each of the affected taxing jurisdictions for comment. Today, at the Town of Montgomery IDA meeting the board voted to set a public hearing for the draft UTEP to take place on October 13 at 1 p.m.
“We hope to build consensus around this UTEP,” said IDA Chairman Jeffrey Crist. “There’s no denying that citizens, governments, and institutions desire innovative, cutting edge development. Our new UTEP, coupled with the Executive Director’s planning and collaboration efforts to bring cutting-edge companies here puts us in a very favorable position to attract and grow these sectors.”
“Conor and the IDA Board have been working tirelessly to develop a new strategy for our town to present to the public,” said Town Supervisor Brian Maher. “I am excited for our town residents to hear about this new direction. Our draft UTEP is one of the more forward thinking UTEP’s in the state, placing high technology and advanced manufacturing in its own exemption category. Innovation and technology are a major priority for the Town of Montgomery and real steps are being taken towards bringing these developments here.”
The new UTEP will have a handful of new PILOT categories, such as the 15-year strategic schedule for projects like research and development and medical labs, a 15-year technology and advanced manufacturing schedule, and a 10-year schedule.
“We’re also excited to be including an adaptive reuse schedule,” continued Mr. Eckert. “This unique program will create incentives for the use of existing, oftentimes blighted structures, for newer productive uses, much like the City Winery development. This UTEP will work to strengthen our technology attraction strategy immediately. This policy is a signal to not just the region, but the entire east coast and the nation, that the Town of Montgomery is ready for more innovative development. We have the leadership, strategy, and with the adoption of this new UTEP, we will have the tools to make it a reality.”
Another important update to the town’s draft UTEP is taking the 15-year, often controversial PILOT, and making it a 10-year program. This will substantially increase the amount of tax revenue the town will receive for future warehouse developments, while also ensuring the local labor policy is utilized.
Another concept being discussed is incentivizing projects that use green building, create higher paying jobs, offer education or workforce development opportunities and create significant spin-off jobs. The Town of Montgomery IDA board is encouraging members of the public to provide written feedback prior to and during their scheduled public hearing on October 13 Comments can be sent to Conor Eckert, IDA Executive Director: email@example.com.