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Flexovit USA will be repaid $497,450

Evans officials Wednesday announced an agreement to repay Flexovit USA almost $500,000 because of improper tax assessments.

The repayment over six years totals $497,450.50 -- money already collected in town, county and Lake Shore Central School District taxes.

In a 1997 economic development deal between the company and the Erie County Development Agency in which Flexovit -- which manufactures abrasive grinding wheels at its Angola plant -- transferred ownership of property on Eden-Evans Center Road to the agency in return for a lease agreement that featured a 10-year payment in lieu of taxes.

However, the company apparently paid both property tax bills and the fixed PILOT payments, officials said.

Wednesday, board members authorized Supervisor Robert Catalino to sign a memorandum of understanding among the town, Flexovit and the Erie County Development Agency -- subject to approvals by the town attorney and assessor -- to pay back excess payments.

The town, county and school district still will receive the negotiated PILOT payments from Flexovit. The tax repayment amounts per year will be $47,210.21 for school district taxes, $14,568.07 in Erie County taxes and $21,130.14 in Town of Evans taxes.

"It's a good thing Flexovit was willing to settle it this way," Catalino said. "They could have taken the town to court and gotten the whole amount immediately."

The Town Board also:
* Received a letter from the owner of the Grandview Drive-in, one of the last drive-in movie theaters in Erie County, signaling the start of work toward demolition. The Route 5 property is targeted as a Wal-Mart development site.

* Said that talks with the Erie County Water Authority to transfer the town water system to the authority are scheduled soon. The town water system needs about $11.5 million in repairs, officials said.

Water bills would remain about the same, although county water rates are lower. The difference would be used to pay for repairs, officials said.

* Announced a town cleanup day on Earth Day, April 22.

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