New law helps forgive Utica Community Food Bank of $10,000 tax bill


UTICA, N.Y. (WKTV) - The Utica Community Food Bank got an early Christmas present. A back-tax bill of roughly $10,000 is forgiven, and while it didn't take an act of Congress, it did take an act of the state legislature.

Food Bank board member Mark Wolber says that, for two years, a former executive director failed to fill out paperwork that would allow the food bank to enjoy tax-exempt status. He asked the city to forgive the loan, payment of which would have severely hampered the food bank's ability to feed its clients, but the city didn't have the legal authority to waive it.

At Senator Joe Griffo and Assemblywoman RoAnn Destito's urging, the state legislature passed a law specifically allowing the city to forgive the bill. And now, the city council has gone ahead and forgiven the bill. And it's a good thing, according to Mark Wolber.

"We don't have anything extravagant, there's not anything we can cut back on so we probably would have taken a hit on the food part so this enables us to continue to service people who come in for food from the food bank," says Wolber.

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