Mayor Barlow announces property tax agreement with Oswego Health
Mayor Billy Barlow announced today the City of Oswego and Oswego Health have developed and agreed upon a property tax agreement.
As one of the area’s largest employers, with medical practices spread throughout Oswego County, including the 164-bed acute care community hospital located in downtown Oswego, Oswego Health, as a not-for-profit 501(c)3 entity, is legally exempt from paying property taxes. In recent years, tension has grown between local government and the healthcare system as Oswego Health has significantly expanded the main campus on Oswego’s west side, along with other properties throughout the City of Oswego.
Since taking office, Mayor Barlow has been working closely with Oswego Health to negotiate an agreement that directly addresses the impact of their property acquisitions on city tax revenues.
Today, Mayor Barlow and Oswego Health’s new Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer Michael C. Backus, effectively negotiated a ten-year, $375,000 agreement allowing Oswego Health to continue operating and expanding within the city limits while ensuring city government receives compensation for standard city services.
“I’m proud to put this decade long discussion to rest and working with Mike Backus and the leadership at Oswego Health, we’re able to come to a fair agreement that compensates the city for the services we regularly provide while recognizing and appreciating Oswego Health’s presence and contributions to our community, while improving local healthcare and increasing accessibility to more services,” said Mayor Billy Barlow. “I appreciate the partnership and commitment from Oswego Health and look forward to doing more good work together in the future,” Barlow said.
Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of Oswego Health, Michael C. Backus, said, “Every great community consists of key pillars – a strong educational system such as SUNY Oswego, industrial powerhouses such as Exelon Generation and Novelis, a strong community leader such as Mayor Barlow, and access to affordable healthcare. These unique pillars, must all work together to benefit the overall community as a whole and we believe right here in Oswego we have those key pillars. Together everyone achieves more – and I’m proud to be part of that T.E.A.M. mentality here in Oswego with Mayor Barlow.”
The City of Oswego and Oswego Health previously teamed up in 2019 to launch an employee ride-sharing program for Oswego Health employees, funded through the city’s ESPRI LIFT anti-poverty program and quickly worked to identify a vacant and abandoned property as the location for Oswego Health’s new Behavioral Health Services building set to open in 2021, also in downtown Oswego.