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St. Lawrence County IDA will repair Clearwater Paper railroad trestle

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GOUVERNEUR — The St. Lawrence County Industrial Development Agency will have a public hearing May 16 on a proposal to rehabilitate a railroad trestle that serves Clearwater Paper in Natural Dam using a $200,000 state grant.

The hearing will take place at 5:30 p.m. in the town office.

The IDA intends to use money available through the regional economic development council competition to improve a trestle on a 1.8-mile railroad spur that connects to a CSX line.

The trestle was closed in 2009. Its rehabilitation will improve operational efficiency at the paper mill and reduce the time product is handled, IDA Chief Executive Officer Patrick J. Kelly said.

“It will have a long-term benefit for the facility,” he said.

The IDA will hold title to the trestle for the useful life of the improvement, expected to last 30 years, and lease it to the company.

With the IDA as the title holder, the property becomes tax-exempt so the IDA is structuring a payment-in-lieu-of-tax that will have to be approved by the town of Gouverneur and Gouverneur Central School District.

The 30-year PILOT will provide taxing jurisdictions with 100 percent of what they would have received if the property remained on the tax rolls, Mr. Kelly said.

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