The Hempstead Town Industrial Development Agency on Friday indefinitely delayed taking any further action on the Green Acres Mall tax breaks, with IDA members saying they were waiting for a legal challenge by the mall’s owner to be heard.
The IDA originally had planned to meet on Thursday to terminate all agreements with the Valley Stream mall — but the meeting was pushed back to Friday after the mall’s California-based owner, Macerich, was granted a temporary restraining order June 27 by a Nassau Supreme Court judge that prohibited the IDA from revoking the tax breaks for the mall and an adjacent shopping center, the Green Acres Commons.
The IDA had voted in April to revoke the tax breaks, including two payment-in-lieu-of-taxes agreements, or PILOTs, and had planned on Thursday to begin the process of returning the titles to the properties to Macerich. Some Valley Stream property owners and politicians had blamed the tax breaks for increases in school taxes, but IDA officials say school budgeting practices were to blame.
The IDA board on Friday said they were barred from taking any action due to the judge’s temporary restraining order.
Macerich will continue to make payments under the PILOT agreement, but the restraining order bars the IDA from putting the mall back onto the tax rolls.
The IDA also held a second vote Friday on tax breaks for WaterView Land Development LLC to build 86 luxury apartments on Barnum Island, near Island Park.
The board previously approved the project 3-1, but board members later said they had lacked a quorum. The IDA board has seven seats, but one is vacant.
The project was re-approved 4-1 without public comment. Nastre abstained from the vote.