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Emergency contributions to county of Niagara and city of Niagara Falls
Public Authorities (PBA) CHAPTER 43-A, ARTICLE 5, TITLE 1
§ 1012-a. Emergency contributions to county of Niagara and city of
Niagara Falls. 1. On June seventh, nineteen hundred fifty-six a collapse
of the rock wall of the Niagara river resulted in the substantial
destruction of a hydro-electric power generating plant which annually
produced more than three billion kilowatt hours of low-cost electric
energy, most of which was used by industrial plants employing great
numbers of workers in the city of Niagara Falls and vicinity. These
industries would be forced to curtail their operations drastically or
abandon them and thousands of jobs would be lost if the industries were
not able to obtain necessary power at high cost on a temporary basis
from the hydro-electric power commission of Ontario. This commission is
using not only Ontario's share of the water of the Niagara river under
the treaty signed on February twenty-seventh, nineteen hundred fifty,
between the United States and Canada, but also a large part of New
York's share of such water. To provide for the retention and expansion
of existing industry and the attraction of new industry vital to the
economy of the area and to the defense of the United States, it is
essential that power authority of the state of New York complete a power
project to utilize all of the waters of the Niagara available in the
United States. The destruction caused by the rock slide resulted in
reducing to the extent of some ten million dollars the total valuation
of real property subject to taxation in the city of Niagara Falls. This
will result in a temporary tax loss to the county of Niagara and the
city of Niagara Falls of approximately seven hundred thousand dollars
per year with resulting hardship to taxpayers. An increase in the tax
base sufficient to offset such loss cannot be brought about until
industrial activities in the area are expanded and increased through the
availability of low-cost power from such new New York hydro-electric
power project. An emergency justifying financial relief to the county of
Niagara and city of Niagara Falls exists and will continue until such a
project is completed. It is recognized that public authorities
constitute valuable governmental entities in the state, performing
important functions on a businesslike basis through the use of private
funds borrowed from prudent investors without state or municipal credit,
and that the integrity and independence of these authorities must be
maintained and their present exemption from taxation protected.

2. Power authority of the state of New York is hereby authorized to
include in financing the cost of its Niagara river project a total sum
of (1) three million dollars in addition to that otherwise required and
to contribute such additional total sum as emergency relief to the
county of Niagara and city of Niagara Falls on the basis of decreasing
annual allotments over a five-year construction and expansion period;
such annual allotments shall be allocated for school and other purposes
in the same proportion as other moneys collected as real property taxes
in such city; and (2) the power authority of the state of New York is
hereby authorized to expend the sum of one and one-half million dollars
for local improvements in the city of Niagara Falls incidental to or
reasonably related to the Niagara power project of the authority.