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Budget Victory for Local Industrial Development Agencies

Legislators pull a budget provision that would have taken away local authority to offer state sales tax exemptions for new development. 
    Local governments were bracing for a hit in the state spending plan. One of the provisions would have taken away local approval of state sales tax breaks for new business developments.
    However, that was removed from the budget. Monroe County Executive Maggie Brooks said Thursday, keeping control over state sales tax exemptions offers Industrial Development Agencies another tool to attract new development.
    Governor Andrew Cuomo has criticized localities for being too lenient with tax breaks.
    During a stop in Rochester in March, he told News 8 the current policy was "like a boondoggle," offering companies breaks to relocate in the county, or offering them to businesses who were retaining jobs instead of creating them.
    Brooks said those cases are exceptions to the rule.
    Still, counties statewide have agreed to oversee projects more closely.
"We'll be following up in a more aggressive way to make sure that they are applying it the way they said they would.", Brooks said. "We'll make sure they are meeting the requirements that allowed them to accept the benefits. I think you'll find there are few that don't comply. But, it never hurts to have more oversight and we certainly support that."
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