Northport Power Plant and the Huntington Tax Certiorari Lawsuit
A few year back LIPA announced a lawsuit to decrease the taxes it pays to the Town of Huntington and the Northport-East Northport School District. This lead to counter suits by the town and district, and an ill conceived Albany deal during the 2013 budget cycle to raise taxes throughout Huntington so as to provide relief for LIPA.
The Albany agreement came and went and taxes have not been increased as a result to date, However, the issue hangs like the sword of Damocles over the heads of homeowners on the west side of Fort Salonga. Enter Assemblyman Andrew Raia who recently wrote a thoughtful OP-ED piece challenging the construction of the Caithness II plant proposed for Yaphank.
He writes….Building Caithness II guarantees a rate increase of at the very least 3 percent, when in reality, we will probably see an increase of 10 percent. Why do we have to foot the bill for a multi-billion dollar power plant when the Northport Power Plant is currently operating at half capacity? With only two of its four boilers operational, the already-existing Northport Power Plant isn’t even fully operational. Instead of building a brand new facility, let’s modernize and retrofit the Northport Power Plant to meet future energy demands on the north shore. … Right now, running on 1950s technology, the Northport Power Plant is one of the most antiquated, inefficient, and environmentally-damaging plants on the eastern seaboard.
This was followed by a decision to abandon the Caithness II facility on the part of LIPA. The FSA board remains highly aware that a similar issue was resolved through state intervention in Port Jefferson where an agreement was forged to repower that plant and maintain the taxes it pays in support of the town and schools.
We are also conscious of the continuing efforts of on the part of companies to construct peak plants in the industrial area which we oppose. Why do that when a simpler solution is found in the repowering and conversion to natural gas for all 4 stacks of the Northport Plant?
The FSA leadership supports Mr. Raia’s position and believes that repowering is the best solution for our community and Long Island