NORWICH – Payment In Lieu of Taxes (PILOT) agreements are active through out New York and many other states. PILOT agreements can be used to entice businesses to come to an area, by promising them a tax break for a certain number of years. PILOT agreements can also be used to generate revenue for the city, when applied to tax exempt organizations.
“We have eight active PILOT agreements within the city now,” said City Finance Director Bill Roberts. “They are all currently with tax exempt organizations.”
Roberts explained that many tax-exempt or non-profit organizations agree to enter into PILOT agreements, in which the organization recognizes that they benefit from city services ordinarily born by property owners in the form of property taxes. The organization agrees to pay the city a sum on money in lieu of taxes based upon the assessed value of their property. In the City of Norwich, 35 percent of the assessed property value is tax exempt. Roberts explained that this results in a large amount of money that the city does not get. “Every time a property is taken off the tax role, that’s a few dollars that we don’t have,” said City of Norwich Mayor Joseph Maiurano.