Residents face setback in Green Acres Mall tax break fight

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VALLEY STREAM -

A judge has granted a request for a temporary restraining order by the Green Acres Mall owners against the Hempstead Industrial Development Agency  -- a new blow to residents who have been fighting a controversial tax break for the mall. 

News 12 reported that residents thought they won a victory against the mall back in April when the Hempstead IDA voted to undo the tax breaks for the Green Acres Mall. The IDA claimed the mall "grossly misstated" the number of jobs that would be created.

The Green Acres Mall fought back by filing a lawsuit against the IDA. Mall owners claim, "There is simply no legal or factual basis to justify the IDA's revocation of the PILOTs (payment in lieu of taxes). The owners are being cast as the scapegoat for what has become a politically unpopular agreement."

Some residents say their 2016 taxes increased almost 12 percent because of the tax breaks granted to the mall. They called the judge's ruling a setback.

"I don't believe we should be paying more taxes because they're opening up all these new stores here," says Phil Carini, of Lynbrook. 

The Hempstead IDA was planning to start the process of returning the mall to the tax rolls at a meeting this Thursday. That is now on hold as the court battle continues.

The next court hearing is July 27.
 

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