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Tax-free, but water costs $$$!

By Gordon Woodworth, Chronicle News Editor

With nearly 25 percent of Glens Falls’s property owned by not-for-profits that don’t pay taxes, these exempt entities are increasingly under the microscope in the financially hard-pressed city.

But one way that not-for-profits are no different than any other taxpayer is in their water and sewer bills.

They all pay not just for usage but also the capital charges to pay off long-term debt piled up to comply with state DEC consent orders.

Glens Falls Hospital’s total water and sewer bill for the past year was $386,333.81, according to figures supplied at The Chronicle’s request by Assistant City Controller Mike Regan. The year ran from April 1, 2018 to March 31, 2019.

The hospital used 19.78-million gallons of water, for which it was charged $40,622.01 in water usage and $58,515.91 in sewer usage.

The hospital also paid a water capital charge of $109,009.58 and a sewer capital charge was $178,186.31.

The capital charges are calculated based on property’s assessed value. The total assessed value of property owned by Glens Falls Hospital is $95.4-million,

The Glens Falls Housing Authority paid $46,199.14 for water/sewer bills for its Stichman Tower and Cronin Hi-Rise. Those two senior housing facilities used a combined 4.1-million gallons of water in the last 12 months.

Glens Falls YMCA paid $36,009.17 in water/sewer fees and capital charges. It used 3.18-million gallons of water.

Water and sewer usage fees are based on how much water is used. There’s a minimum quarterly payment of $51.73 for up to 2,700 cubic feet of water (20,197.4 gallons)

The minimum sewer fee is $50.81 every three months for 2,700 cubic feet (20,197.4 gallons).

The water capital charge is 97.8 cents per $1,000 of assessed value. The sewer capital charge is $2.134 per $1,000.

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