SOMERS, N.Y. -- Within the span of roughly two years, Somers is experiencing the departures of PepsiCo and IBM, two Fortune 500 companies that have been longtime mainstays in town.
Yet the companies' departures - PepsiCo has left while IBM plans to do so next year - do not scare Somers Supervisor Rick Morrissey. He expressed optimism about the town's fiscal future in a Daily Voice Leaders series interview.
"The days of large corporate campuses are numbered, apparently, as certainly witnessed in my town.”
Morrissey, who said that the news does not come as “a shock to this town,” cited several new development projects taking place, particularly in Baldwin Place. The projects, which focus on residential, multi-family units, will bring in new tax revenue that will help to offset the losses of the companies, the supervisor noted.
Additionally, the new owner of the former PepsiCo site - reported to be connected to Mexican business tycoon Carlos Slim - will continue to pay property taxes. IBM, which plans on selling its sprawling campus, will also do so as long as it possesses the property. However, as Morrissey noted, the amounts of taxes owed are tied to occupancy of the commercial spaces.
“So it will never be a zero intake, as far as revenue goes,” Morrissey said about the ongoing - albeit, potentially diminished - taxes from the companies' campuses.
Morrissey also touched upon the coming loss of jobs from IBM. Noting that IBM's workforce is Somers is already considerably lower from when it first came to town in the 1980s, Morrissey expressed confidence that upcoming townhouse developments will bring new residents who will patronize local businesses. Examples include the proposed 66 townhouse units for Somers Crossing, which is a development planned for downtown Somers, and a 153-unit project in Baldwin Place from real-estate company AvalonBay.
“We're very optimistic about the future of our town,”
The video also includes discussion with Morrissey about what makes Somers special and why he got into town government.
Watch the full video above this article.