Lockport Union-Sun & Journal Online

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April 26, 2013

Yahoo tax breaks approved


Lockport Union-Sun & Journal — “I think they see what they can do to make the community better,” he said.

The American Cancer Society and Upstate New York Transplant Services noted the support Yahoo employees give their organizations in volunteering.

Smith added that the tax breaks wasn’t the act of writing Yahoo a check, but rather municipalities taking less from Yahoo in taxes.

Yahoo will have a 20-year Payment-In-Lieu-of-Taxes agreement for construction and equipment costs, as well as a 100 percent abatement of property taxes for the first 10 years of the deal. Then the exemption would be reduced by 20 percent every two years.  It’s estimated the deal will save Yahoo over $30 million total.

The company is also receiving $2 million worth of state tax credits and a seven-year renewable deal with the New York Power Authority for half-price hydropower. In March, the New York Power Authority Board of Directors approved an allocation of 7,200 kilowatts of low-cost power.

The Town of Lockport does not have a town property tax, meaning the municipalities most affected would be Niagara County and the Starpoint Central School District.

The incentive package offered by state, federal and town authorities was “very generous and helped ensure our expansion in Lockport,” Yahoo officials said in a statement.

“In return for these generous incentives, Yahoo has committed to giving back to the local community, specifically through our contribution of $3.5 million over seven years to the Community Foundation of Greater Buffalo,” a Yahoo spokesperson said. “In addition, Yahoo’s expansion in Lockport will create 115 new jobs in Western New York. We are proud to contribute to the local economy in such a positive way through this job creation.”

Yahoo officials noted that over 90 percent of the original Lockport staff for the first data center in the area were local hires when the facility opened in 2010. That was a $150 million investment by Yahoo and will bring a total of 125 jobs by the end of 2014, withh 100 in Lockport, company officials said.

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