Ulster County Industrial Development Agency nears decisions on tax breaks for two businesses that failed to meet job goals – a February 21, 2013 article in Freeman – reports that IDA Chairman David O’Halloran has been negotiating with Skate Time 209 in Accord and Hudson Valley Sports Dome in Milton for a voluntary reduction in the benefits they receive – for failing to live up to their job promises.
O’Halloran said he hopes to have a deal in place with the Sports Dome by the March 13 meeting of the agency’s board of directors. He was less optimistic about reaching a deal with Skate Time, which is owned by county Legislature Chairwoman Terry Bernardo and her husband, Len. “I have not made any significant progress in negotiating with them to reach a voluntary agreement,” O’Halloran said.
On their application for tax breaks, the Bernardos said they would create 20 full-time jobs, but in 2011, they reported only nine full- and part-time jobs, a 55 percent shortfall in job creation. Under the proposed policy, tax breaks given to the business would be reduced by 27.5 percent. However, because the business has created other benefits to the community, the reduction was cut in half, to 14 percent.
Len Bernardo has maintained that job creation was not a criteria for receiving the tax breaks.
The Bernardos are full of it. The Ulster County Development Corporationis the lead economic development agency for the County with a mission of creating and maintaining jobs through the attraction of new business or the retention and expansion of existing business. In order to accomplish this objective, UCDC offers and administers financial programs and loan funds, assists with site selection, and provides overall guidance and assistance with general and specific business problems, issues and opportunities.
Clearly stated, the UCDC’s mission is to create and maintain jobs through IDA. In other words, Len and Terry Bernardo get the tax break if they create the promised jobs. There is no other possible reason to get the taxpayers’ money. Imaginary benefits to the community do not count. Exploiting kids at $3.75 an hour does not count. Breaking the law and letting the Girl Scouts overnight at the rink doesn’t count either.
I know the Bernardos believe they can fool all the people all the time, but these comments on the Freeman article vouch for the contrary:
Sounds like political favoritism and possibly conflict of interest. She is a county legislator and the county legislature may have some control over the Ulster County Industrial Development Agency. So if anything to avoid and thing that looks like favoritism they should hold her to the original stipulations of whatever the agreement was.
Just another instance of the ‘citiots’ moving upstate to show the stupid woodchucks how it’s done. They probably could not have pulled this off in Nassau County.
Here’s the deal. Skate Time 209 has no business even being in a “voluntary negotiation”. The documentation for the tax deal stipulates clearly that 20-full time jobs would be created. They have not within the LEGAL time frame. Pay up. These deadbeats are the most grotesque example of local Republican “hand in pockets” criminality that is rampant in this area. If the Bernardo’s really want to play mouthpiece to the failed Conservative agenda then their MORAL and LEGAL responsibility is to honor their obligations. Frankly, it is clear the Bernardo’s used this as a “loan” for other things and promised jobs they knew would never come to fruition. Disgusting people, indeed.
Just goes to show you, you dont need to be a valid businessman with any morals to be elected.
“Len Bernardo has maintained that job creation was not a criteria for receiving the tax breaks.” What other criteria would there be for a PILOT if not job creation? Maybe political connections? Come on Mr. Bernardo the citizens of Ulster County are not stupid. You made a deal that you did not live up to and now you have to give back the money you received. Do the right thing!!!!!!!
Should O’Halloran be involved with Skatetime at all? He has hosted fundraisers for Mrs. Len Bernardo for crying out loud! When will this county address conflicts of interest that are part of the daily routine of doing business. It is sickening. The Executives office likes low hanging fruit, here is some for you! Conflicts of interest, go get ’em!
– Jon Dogar-Marinesco
11:02, thank you for reading this blog! I was afraid that you’d never post a comment here, and I was a bit jealous of Robin’s success…
11:02…The problem is that the law does not run it’s course, it is corrupt. The Bernardo’s are a big part of the political corruption in Ulster County. IDA is just one example.
To the person who left the first comment, why didn’t YOU go after Colony Liquor? At least Jon is doing something, you want him to catch all the fish in the lake?
Is JP (John Parete)???
You really are a hypocrite, Marinesco. You screwed your credit card banks out of hundreds of thousands of dollars and you have the gall to go after the Bernardos for taking a tax break. Every night you sleep in a store not zoned for residential uses but you criticize Skate Time for letting Girl Scouts overngith there once in a while. You have never created any jobs in Ulster County but you rant against Skate Time for not creating any jobs. You know damned well that there was no promise to create jobs, only an estimate, but you lie about them.
You talk about being part of the community but your idiot wife forced me and many others off of town committees with her fascist dictator act. Your pathetic little memorial that nobody ever visits is just fine with the flagpole it got but you threw a toddler’s hissy fit because the pole was shorter than you wanted, even though it would have cost the town a whole lot more money.
You rant and rave about freedom and capitalism but you were a truly bad artist under a communist regime. Many people have asked you why our neighbor who used to be FBI is going around telling people you were involved with the commies in Romania but you never answer.
You are a hypocrite and a dirtbag. You attack the Bernardos for one reason. They are successes and you are a total failure. If you lived in any other town you would be a nobody. The only reason you have any voice here is because your twit of a wife was accused of running a porn site. You two pretended to be offended but it was the luckiest thing that ever happened to you.
It must be tiring to spend your entire life so angry. No wonder you look so decrepit in all your pics.
9:59….you are so angry that you insist on being blind to facts. The proof is out there that Jon’s creditors were paid, he has the permit required to live in his business, Jon never said he would create jobs (Bernardo’s did), Jon does not receive tax breaks on his business (Bernardo’s do), Jon’s design was chosen for the Vets park so apparently he has artistic talent, not to mention all the kudos he receives for his artistic talent on the blogs, Jon’s adverse reaction to the flag pole issue was understandable as NO ARTIST wants someone with no artistic ability/eye/understanding to change their art. I could go on and on but you are unwilling to see anything but hate, so I won’t waste anymore of my time.
I read the comments reproduced from FREEMAN and I have a question for 9:59 — are you sure Jon wrote all of them? ‘Cause you kinda blame him for Barnardo’s “successful” misery.
11:52 The Bernardos never promised job creation. That is a lie spread by a bitter hack artist. They made estimates. And Jon’s design was chosen because his wife was on the Board not because it was any good. And even if it was who gives a damn? The pole was shortened to save the taxpayers money. And that is what matters not some idiot artist getting his panties in a bunch. Who gives a crap if the artist gets angry? He’s not paying for it so he doesn’t count. Kudos my ass. All that crap comes from a handful of morons who are just as angry as he is for no damn reason.
Ummmm…. 12:05 aka 9:59… Maybe you should re-read your posts… You seem to be the angry one here… There are medications that can help you with your anger… I am sure you know someone who can write you a prescription for that… Best of luck!
Resorting to calling people who disagree with you morons?!?! It is sad that one must stoop to that level. Is it possible that the reason you are no longer on the Town’s committees might not be due to Manuela but instead due to this very behavior?
As I told my children growing up: instead of calling names, raising your voice or ranting and raving simply improve your argument or your position on the subject.
Clarification please: I happen to completely agree with 11:52 and Jon. I’m definitely not angry about any of this or anything else, I’m actually a happy go lucky person in general. Does that make me a happy go lucky moron?
Are the business’s patrons aware that they are paying twice for their services? Once at the door and a second time when they pay their taxes which pick up the tax break. Educate their patrons. There must be a billboard available in your area.
The tax credits are given with the idea of the promised jobs being created. Why would you give a tax credit with nothing in return? Boy some of you are not real bright or think we taxpayers are real stupid.