New Assemblyman Plans to Eye IDAs

Industrial Development Agencies will be the target of Buffalo's newest assemblyman when the legislative session kicks off this week.

First term Democrat Sean Ryan says IDAs give questionable tax breaks to already-profitable businesses, not companies that actually need help.

Ryan says Erie County's six different IDAs are disjointed - and should plan together, like the Western New York Regional Economic Council whose economic plan was recently rewarded by Governor Cuomo, "The celebration we had in Albany over the $100 million [award to the Western New York Regional Council]. Within a two year period that $100 million will be dwarfed by over $100 million that will be given out by ineffective IDAs in our region that instead of promoting economic growth, will continue to drive our region backwards," Ryan says.

IDA reform measures have been defeated in the past few legislative sessions. Ryan will be taking the mantle from former Assemblyman Sam Hoyt, who was the lead author on those bills.

Ryan says he'll look to make IDAs more accountable if tax breaks are granted to hotels, car dealerships and doctor's offices. He adds he'll reach out to Erie County's six IDAs to find common ground before introducing legislation.

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