Monday, April 27, 2020

The Latest on 75 North Seventh Street

Gossips reported yesterday that the Benjamin Center at SUNY New Paltz would be studying the proposed PILOT for the affordable housing project being pursued with the Galvan Foundation. Today, there was an official press release from Council president Tom DePietro.
Review of PILOT Agreement Announced By Hudson Council 
Independent study will assess the property tax exemption plan for the N. 7th Street Affordable Housing Program. 
Hudson’s Common Council President Tom DePietro announced today that the Council has commissioned the Benjamin Center for Public Policy Initiatives at SUNY New Paltz to conduct an analysis of the PILOT agreement for the proposed Seventh Street affordable housing project. The study is expected to be completed within four weeks, in advance of the Common Council’s vote on the project. 
Common Council approval is required before the housing developer can move forward to secure the necessary funding from New York State Home and Community Renewal (HCR), the state’s affordable housing agency. 
The Galvan Foundation, developers of the proposed affordable housing project, is underwriting the study. 
“The Common Council is committed to increasing affordable housing in Hudson,” said President DePietro. “At the same time we need the expertise of the Benjamin Center to analyze the costs and benefits of the PILOT agreement.” 
A tax abatement agreement between the city and the developer, known as a PILOT (Payment In Lieu of Taxes) is typical of affordable housing development projects. 
The N. 7th Street affordable housing project’s proposed PILOT agreement covers 95% of the intended square footage, and excludes the remaining 4,000 square feet of commercial space. 
“The Council takes its due diligence seriously,” added President DePietro. “Bringing in the Benjamin Center for an impartial review of the PILOT agreement is part of exercising that responsibility.” 
At last week's Council meeting, when it was decided there would be a special meeting about the project on Monday, May 4, DePietro indicated that he would call for a vote from the Council at that meeting. It appears from the press release that the vote will be postponed until the May Council meeting, scheduled to take place on Tuesday, May 19. 

During the mayor's virtual town hall meeting on Friday, DePietro said a comprehensive guide to the project would be posted on the City of Hudson website today. That guide, which includes the above press release, can be found here.    


  1. If the Council takes its responsibility of due diligence seriously, why did it take so long to announce this review?

    Also, Galvan - who has the most to gain - is underwriting the review? Even assuming the review itself would be "impartial," isn't it the case that the underwriter sets the scope or the parameters? For example, will the review determine whether the PILOT is appropriate in the first place, or whether the dollar amount of the tax abatement is fair, or some other criteria? I would like to hear from the Council whether the Council itself defined the scope.

    Otherwise, are we all just ok with just more obfuscation masquerading as transparency?

  2. It will take some time to crunch the numbers but on sheer scale alone, this project seems out of place. It's as wide as 9 standard single lot buildings in Hudson. Nine.

  3. Interesting how the prior illustration, with the trees, bikers and gardens, gave a totally distorted view of the proposed building. This thing is a real horror show.

  4. this project will cost the City of Hudson hundreds of thousands a year in City services and will pay little to defray them.

    the school expenses alone will be large since each student in Hudson costs $ 26,000 per student -- if we are lucky. it is one of the most expensive school systems in the state, but is ranked in the lowest 25 %.

    If the building has 20 children living in it, the cost of the schooling is 20 times $ 26,000. or $ 520,000. in just school expenses.

    these buildings usually generate the most police calls, like Hudson Terrace, which has 70% of the calls of the police force in a period.

    these hulking monsters are expensive to service for the City they are in, and they do not add much in the way of revenue to the already stressed out City budget.

    Finally, the building looks more like a penitentiary than a small scale apartment house. this is a really bad idea for the friendly city.

  5. It’s so ugly and completely out of place in Hudson. Did Galvan support this mayor’s campaign? How long have they been planning this scam?

  6. Meanwhile Galvan resides in his palatial estate in another state.