Saratoga County

Developer seeks tax breaks for Wilton senior housing complex

A developer of senior citizen housing is looking for $700,000 in tax breaks if it builds a 110-unit

A developer of senior citizen housing is looking for $700,000 in tax breaks if it builds a 110-unit independent-living complex in Wilton.

The county Industrial Development Agency has set a public hearing on the request from Perry Road Development for Feb. 9 at Wilton Town Hall, but IDA officials on Monday expressed concerns about setting a precedent for helping other senior housing projects.

“This board has to be careful if we’re going to proceed,” said IDA CEO Lawrence D. Benton.

Benton said the IDA has informally discouraged other senior housing projects from applying to its assistance, but they were seeking property-tax reductions, which the Wilton developer isn’t.

IDA counsel Michael J. Toohey said there are several other senior housing projects planned in the Saratoga Springs region, and the others haven’t sought IDA assistance.

The IDA’s purpose is to offer tax incentives to encourage industrial job creation, though it has the power to support other kinds of projects if they have public benefits.

Perry Road development wants to build the market-rate apartments at the corner of Perry Road and Route 50, just north of the Exit 15 commercial zone.

Backers of the $20 million housing project aren’t seeking any special property tax breaks, but want the IDA to grant a mortgage recording-tax exemption worth about $200,000, and a construction materials sales-tax exemption worth an estimated $500,000.

The tax breaks are being sought in consideration for what the builder will be spending to extend water and sewer service to the location, said Dennis Brobston, president of the Saratoga Economic Development Corp. Others would be able to use the water and sewer lines as well, he noted.

“It’s the type of senior housing the town of Wilton is looking for,” Brobston told the IDA board at a meeting in Ballston Spa.

The project requires zoning approval from the Wilton Town Board. Town Supervisor Arthur Johnson said he believes the board will vote at its Feb. 5 meeting.

Project representative Adam DeSantis said that while the apartments’ tenants live independently, they will be offering a continental breakfast, free transportation, classes and social functions as part of their rent. “There isn’t a lot of the type of program we offer in the area,” DeSantis said.

The developer owns the similar Eastwick Village complex in North Greenbush, and is building senior apartments in Glenville, he said.

Once the independent living apartments are built, DeSantis said a second phase with assisted living apartments could follow.

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