The Niagara County Industrial Development Agency Thursday approved $2.46 million in industrial development bonds for the second phase of Benderson Development Co.'s shopping complex on Niagara Falls Boulevard at 72nd Street, which includes a new Target store.
The agency originally approved $14 million in financing, but now the bonds will be used just for Benderson's costs in acquiring the land and installing utilities and roadways, agency counsel Glenn S. Hackett said. David H. Baldauf of Benderson said Target built the store and is leasing the land from Benderson.
The Target store is the second phase of the development, which already includes a Tops Friendly Markets' International store. Benderson will come back to the agency once more for the final piece of funding, Baldauf said. The first two phases include about 240,000 square feet of commercial space.
The agency, as owner of the property under the financing agreements, also granted easements for ingress, egress, parking and utilities.
In another matter, the agency approved a tentative agreement with Hospitality Motels USA Inc. that allows the owner of the Days Inn at 201 Rainbow Blvd to avoid paying about three-quarters of the money it owes under its payment-in-lieu-of-taxes agreement.
The negotiated settlement calls for the company to pay about $240,000 in delinquent payments in lieu of taxes over the next year, while at the same time keeping up on current payments. The hotel owes about $1 million in back payments.
At the end of the year, the agreement will be renegotiated, said Leo J. Nowak, executive director of the development agency. He said the agency expects the hotel will be in a better position to pay because of the anticipated spin-off business from the gambling casino opening in Niagara Falls, Ont. Hackett said the settlement hopefully will keep the agency and the hotel out of court.
Hackett also said the agency discussed in executive session possible litigation with the Alliance Foundation of Western New York, which has applied for $22 million in tax free bonds to buy the Niagara Splash water park. Hackett declined to divulge the nature of the potential litigation.
John P. Bartolomei, an attorney and principal owner of the Niagara Venture, last month accused the agency of being part of a "secret agenda" that is holding up approval of the project. Niagara Venture developed the park at Falls and Quay streets in Niagara Falls.
The agency had referred the application to its bond counsel to determine if the foundation was eligible for tax exempt status.
In other business:
Gary Kelsey, economic development coordinator, said the agency was able to recover 71 percent, or $89,000, of a $125,000 unpaid loan balance from Buffalo Manufacturing Inc. of North Tonawanda through a secured sale.
The agency sent a proposed agreement with the county to its loan committee for some revisions that Hackett said would not be substantial. The agreement spells out the terms for a $1.5 million loan from the county to the IDA that will be used to help bring TeleTech Inc. to Niagara Falls. The money would revert to the county if the deal with the telemarketer falls through. The changes are intended to protect the agency in case the loans are not repaid.
Agency members, acting as directors of the Niagara County Development Corp., also approved a $130,000 loan to Costanza Welding Inc., doing business as Cataract Steel Industries of Niagara Falls, for an expansion expected to add 19 employees. The NCDC is the lending arm of the IDA.
The development corporation also approved two loans of $16,000 each to Diane Vacca of Hunter Homes in Lewiston and Donald Lenda of Van City in Wheatfield to be made through the county's Microenterprise Assistance Program.