SLC lawmakers delay sales tax vote, talk police reform

St. Lawrence County sales tax

CANTON, N.Y. (WWNY) - St. Lawrence County is delaying a vote on its sales tax split with Ogdensburg.

It comes after an hours-long finance committee meeting Monday night.

Legislators were divided, 8 in favor of tabling the vote, 7 wanting to vote Monday night.

It concerns the distribution of sales tax between the county and its municipalities, with Ogdensburg’s share as the sticking point.

Last week city leaders voted unanimously to show support for the proposed plan, which Mayor Mike Skelly says would keep the same tax split until 2023.

The deal, however, lasts until 2030.

According to county lawmakers, when 2023 comes, the city is able to preempt the deal, which would change the way sales tax is distributed.

“When that happens, the county loses 1.5 percent of whatever is collected in the city of Ogdensburg,” county Legislature chair Joe Lightfoot said. “That’s not being taken into consideration. What effect that will have on the distributions we haven’t even looked at that, nobody has.”

County lawmakers also voted to adopt a local implementation plan for police reform mandated by the state.

The sheriff’s office has been working on its plan since summer.

Changes include deputies wearing body cameras, as well as mental health and other training.

The resolution will now be sent to the governor and state lawmakers.

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