Thanks to County Legislature inaction Tuesday, Niagara County will participate in the state's next sales tax-free week for clothing.
A resolution that would have had the county opt out of the tax holiday starting Jan. 31 was added to the Legislature agenda as a late item but then was withdrawn without a vote.
Legislature Chairman William L. Ross said the majority caucus met before the meeting, and it became apparent that the proposal to opt out would have been defeated anyway.
The state Department of Taxation and Finance set a Dec. 3 deadline for counties to change their positions on participating in the tax-free week. Tuesday's session was the Legislature's last before then.
Niagara County hadn't taken part in the sales tax holiday from 1998 until the most recent one Aug. 31.
Legislators tabled the matter at a recent committee meeting after County Treasurer David S. Broderick said it might be another six months before the revenue impact of the August week is known.
Ross said there never was a solid estimate of the lost revenue before the Legislature voted in the summer. The last figure Broderick offered was $130,000 to $140,000.
Also Tuesday, the Legislature voted, 12-6, in favor of a local law giving the majority of the full Legislature the power to fill a vacant seat that occurs between elections.
The minority Democrats charge that Legislator Steven A. D'Anna, a Niagara Falls Democrat who caucuses with the GOP -led majority, is planning to resign because his job leaves him too little time to be a legislator.
Under the old law, only the other registered Democrats would have had the authority to vote on appointing D'Anna's replacement. Now the entire body will vote on filling vacancies, but the replacement must be a registered member of the same party as the former lawmaker.
In effect, if D'Anna resigns, the Republicans will be looking for another Democrat from his 1st District who is willing to vote with the GOP. D'Anna said he will consider what to do early next year. The new law takes effect Jan. 1.