Sony DADC layoffs prompt questions regarding company's tax abatements

A lot of locals are asking what the layoffs mean for Sony DADC's tax abatements with the City of Terre Haute.

Posted: Jan 19, 2018 2:15 PM
Updated: Jan 19, 2018 7:04 PM

TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTHI) - In the wake of Wednesday's announcement of 375 layoffs coming to the Sony DADC plant in Terre Haute, many in the community are questioning the impact this decision could have on the company's tax abatements with the city.

We found out the council cannot just simply rescind the abatements. There's a process that could involve lots of discussion.

"As a councilman, your main focus is to provide a quality of life for families here to be able to buy a home, get a job, raise a family, go on vacations," said City Councilman Karrum Nasser. "It's just disheartening that 375 families are now without jobs."

According to the City Clerk's Office, the council has awarded eight tax abatements to Sony DADC. However, three have or are set to expire soon.

"Do we find them in non-compliance and take their tax abatement away and make it more difficult for Sony to provide the jobs for the remaining employees or move a new line of technology to come here, or do we leave them and allow them to move forward?" Nasser said.

Entities who currently have tax abatements from the city will appear before the council for annual compliance hearings in June. 

When those happen, Nasser wants his fellow council members to keep this in mind when Sony appears for its hearing: Sony DADC has contributed more than $40 million in property taxes over the years.

"I just don't want this to be a punishment to Sony," Nasser said. "I don't want people to have the mindset that Sony did the community wrong. They've been good partners for our community, but the technology just outdated itself."

Nasser says city leaders now want to talk to Sony about what's next, if anything, for the Terre Haute facility.

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