Officals work on project accord

Oct 13 2012 - 9:45pm

SYRACUSE -- City officials are ironing out the small details of a development agreement with Ninigret over a proposed project on the city's far northeast side.

An official from Ninigret and outside counsel hired by the city met with the city council recently to flesh out details of the proposed accord covering 77 acres of a development area in the vicinity of Syracuse High School.

The property is zoned for industrial use.

Things went so smoothly in the work session review that the council, which is known for poring over the minute details of language and codes, finished its review of the document in about half of the allotted time.

A final version is expected to come up for final council review and approval in two weeks.

Attorney Randy Larsen, of Ballard Spahr LLC, described the proposed 15-year accord as a compromise worked out with Ninigret after give and take on both sides of the issue.

Larsen described the negotiations as "spirited" and said the agreement, which has not been made available yet for public review, sets parameters for use of tax increment funds generated by the development.

City officials have already approved a budget of $9.1 million for the tax increment over a span of time.

Larsen said development officials aggressively sought a vesting of right of city zoning laws, limiting the ability of city officials to come in and change zoning laws in the process of a development.

Mayor Jamie Nagle likes what she sees in the proposed agreement and pointed out the give and take in the process.

She said one of the concerns she, as well as neighbors, raised is about potential traffic on 700 South.

"When we can sit down and talk about those concerns, there has been give and take on both sides of the issue," Nagle said.

Ninigret is pressing forward with the 77-acre development after plans to develop property closer to Syracuse High ran into a number of obstacles earlier this year.

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