Gloversville will allow sewer and water hookups to a major car dealership seeking to expand its business in the town of Johnstown.
Gloversville Mayor Dayton King asked the City Council to approve the hookup for Eagle Chevrolet during a work session Tuesday night. Council members said “yes” and will vote on the issue next week.
Gloversville needs to approve the hookups under an agreement with the city of Johnstown as part of operating the Gloversville-Johnstown Wastewater Treatment Facility, which the cities own together. The cities must both approve hookups to parcels outside their corporate boundaries.
King said his city will see a benefit from the Eagle Chevrolet’s expansion through the generation of additional sales tax revenues from vehicle purchases. The city receives a portion of sales tax revenues generated in Fulton County.
Eagle Chevrolet is planning a 26,122-square-foot building partly in the town of Johnstown on 17 acres east of its Route 30A building in the city of Johnstown.
The city and the town of Johnstown have been negotiating over the project for several months. The city had initially proposed annexing the property as a way to provide sewer and water hookups without needing permission from the city of Gloversville. The two cities have often rejected each other’s requests for hookups for business projects outside of their borders, often leading to proposals being abandoned.
Town of Johnstown Supervisor Nancy MacVean is refusing to allow the city of Johnstown to annex the property and threatened to take the matter to court.
MacVean said the owner of Eagle Chevrolet, James Provenzano, is pressing the city and town for an immediate resolution, citing pressure from his supplier to expand his dealership or else face fines. “Annexation would have put this in court, delaying the project, and we want to encourage business in area,” she said.
A spokesman for Eagle Chevrolet did not return a phone call seeking comment for this story.
Johnstown Mayor Sarah Slingerland was not available for comment.
MacVean said as a result of these factors, the two cities are working on a compromise. The compromise calls for the town to receive property taxes at the city rate on the part of the building to be constructed in the town. The city will receive property taxes on the portion of the building in the city; it also will keep all the sales tax generated on the purchases at the dealership, MacVean said.
The assessors of both cities will determine the value of the building for the purpose of assessing property taxes, she said.
“Mr. Provenzano is eager to get his project going. We are trying to accommodate him and we do not want his business to suffer,” MacVean said.
She said she is in favor of the proposed deal with the city. “The city wanted to annex a good chunk of the hill [on East State Street where the building would be constructed], and I was against that,” she said. “This is a compromise.”
Still, the issue of annexation remains on the table, at least for other projects. The town and city are set to negotiate next month on a proposed townhouse project on Pine Avenue, which is in the town. A developer wants the city to annex the property so that he can build double the number of townhouses on the site. He can do this only if he has sewer and water hookups from the city. MacVean said she opposes that annexation proposal and expects discussion with the city and the developer to be complicated.