In April, the Hudson Industrial Development Agency (IDA) began its consideration of a request for tax benefits from the Galvan Foundation for "The Hudson Public," the hotel being proposed for the buildings at the corner of Warren and Fourth streets. (The minutes from the presentation of that project can be found here, beginning on page 6.) At that meeting, it was reiterated that the IDA would take no action on the project until the Planning Board had made its determination. Yesterday, it was decided to delay an IDA decision on this hotel project for 90 days.
The IDA is in the process of developing guidelines and a rubric for evaluating applications for tax benefits. Gossips posted about this at some length yesterday. At the IDA meeting yesterday, Councilmember Ryan Wallace (Third Ward), who chairs the IDA, told the board that applications have been requested for two more hotels and suggested that the IDA delay approving any hotels for 90 days, to allow time to establish the evaluation criteria and ensure that all the hotel projects would be evaluated using the same criteria. A 90-day delay was agreed to by the members of the IDA present. (Cheryl Kaszluga, city assessor, was absent from the meeting.)
When the meeting was opened for public comment, Claire Cousin, First Ward supervisor, said there needed to be a moratorium on all new hospitality businesses in Hudson. Mike Tucker pointed out that restaurants and retail businesses were not eligible for IDA benefits and therefore the IDA had no authority over such businesses. Cousin insisted there needed to be a conversation about hospitality businesses "that are affecting housing and small local businesses." Rebecca Wolff suggested a study needed to be done "to determine how many hotel rooms we have and how many a city our size needs." Wallace asserted that information was already available, commenting, "We don't have to spend money on that." City treasurer Heather Campbell, who is a member of the IDA, indicated that this research is done by those who propose opening new hotels, adding, "Nobody wants to come into an oversaturated market."
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