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OpinionLetters

Most of LI pays taxes on four power plants

A 2010 view of the E.F. Barrett power

A 2010 view of the E.F. Barrett power plant in Island Park. Photo Credit: Kevin P. Coughlin

When the Long Island Power Authority decided to study Long Island’s four, soon-to-be obsolete power plants last year, the agency did all of Long Island a favor [“Discussion of upgrading LIPA plant is pandering,” Editorial, Jan. 19].

For more than five decades, the overwhelming majority, 98 percent, of utility customers have footed the bills and subsidized four school districts near the Northport, Port Jefferson, E.F. Barrett and Glenwood Landing power plants.

Overtaxation has been central to ongoing litigation since 2010, as it benefits roughly 20,000 electric customers, at the expense of PSEG Long Island’s other 1.1 million.

Port Jefferson, for example, has a school tax mill rate 76 percent below the Town of Brookhaven’s average, while neighboring school districts receive no benefit from LIPA’s property tax payments on the Port Jefferson power plant.

Instead of paying for other people’s school taxes, we should be better spending this money to reduce our electric rates, invest in clean energy, and harden the electric grid against storms.

These host communities deserve taxes based on fair assessments. And, the other 1.1 million customers deserve to pay no more than their fair share for local government services.

Mitch Pally, Islandia

Editor’s note: The writer is chief executive of the Long Island Builders Institute, a trade association.

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