February 6, 2011 by USA Post
NYS Unemployment, Lawyers for the group Environmental Monitoring Government of the State of New York today released a comprehensiveanlysis of tax credits distributed to developers under the program of the state brownfield cleanup. Founded in 2003 to encourage the remediation of contaminated areas blighted by former industrial sites, the program goal was to stimulate economic development in low-income neighborhoods and communities of color, while such communities healthier and safer. Click here for a list of sites and tax credits.
Environmentalists view “of the Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) records of contaminated sites rehabilitated, and the records of the state Department of Taxation & Finance, revealed that the developers have made nearly 365 million in tax credits for cleaning up sites contaminated during the calendar years 2008 and 2009. But these tax credits are not encouraging Cleaning dominant African-American or Latino neighborhoods, or in areas with high rates of unemployment or families living in poverty.
“As leaders in New York are busy looking under the sofa cushions for coins, taxpayers have filled the pockets of property developers with hundreds of millions of dollars in the form of tax incentives to the State are missing the mark, “said Alison Jenkins, director of tax policy, environmental advocates in New York. “The targeting of incentives to support struggling neighborhoods of the city would ensure taxpayers get a better return on investment.”
According to research environmentalists’
Primarily African American neighborhoods and Latin America are home to zero projects seeking tax credits. Nearly 33 percent of projects seeking funding are located in neighborhoods that are at least 90 percent Caucasian in the census. (See Table 1).
A total of only four projects that have cost the tax credits, or 10 percent, are located in areas where the percentage of families living in poverty has been more than 30 percent (Table 2).
Thirty-five percent of tax credit projects in regions where the percentage of families living below the poverty level was below nine percent. The statewide average of families living below the poverty line was 11.5 percent; the New York City average was 17.5 percent (Table 2).
Only 7.5 percent of projects seeking funding are located in regions where unemployment exceeds 10 percent. By data from the 2000 census, the average unemployment was 4.7 percent statewide; the New York City average was 5.8 percent. Half of the projects of tax credits are located in neighborhoods with less than four percent unemployment (Table 3).
Environmentalists used the database in December Clean Environment to compile a list of projects that have received a certificate of completion and covered this list with additional information: detailed statistics on the census and income levels demographics, and information on tax credits claimed by the developers of reports published by the Department of Taxation & Finance. Environmentalists used statistics from the 2000 census, which provides the most comprehensive data available, but is capable of unemployment statistics under-report current and poverty.
Although 2010 state budget defers payment of tax credits Brownfield over 2 million and after 2013, the bill will result.
A brownfield is an abandoned or unused land where redevelopment is complicated by environmental contamination. Bacterial communities brownfield and threaten the health and economic barriers to conversion. Unused urban land is a tax burden because it is unproductive in terms of job creation, income generation, or contributing to the tax base.
A new report from the Department of Taxation and Finance with information on tax credits claimed in the calendar year 2010 will be available Monday, January 31, 2011.
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