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Lockport School Board OKs power deal with county

LOCKPORT – Niagara County will send nearly $300,000 worth of electricity to the Lockport City School District over the next three years in compensation for taking three downtown Lockport buildings off the tax rolls.

The Board of Education approved the contract Wednesday, receiving 210 kilowatts of Niagara Power Project electricity from the county’s allocation. The county bought 50 Main St., 11 Main St. and 2040-East Ave. in an online auction in March. The latter two were being leased by the county for offices, while 50 Main was vacant, and the county is trying to resell it. If the building goes back on the tax rolls, the power contract may be adjusted.

Deborah A. Coder, the assistant school superintendent for finance and management, said the contract calls for the county to cover the district’s annual electricity costs up to a limit of $98,000 a year. Using last year’s tax rates, the district lost about $92,000 in property tax revenue because of the county purchase of the three buildings, Coder said.

The county is expected to make a deal to lease parking spaces from the City of Lockport to make up the city’s losses of about $58,000 a year in tax revenue.