Three expansion projects seek Clarence IDA tax breaks

JR Products

Adistributor of RV replacement parts, a residential and commercial contractor and a custom homebuilder are seeking tax breaks from the Clarence Industrial Development Agency this month for three separate projects in Clarence valued at more than $7.5 million.

  • JR Products – formally John D. Roba Co. – plans to construct a 15,000-square-foot warehouse addition to its distribution facility at 9680 County Road, on 3.09 acres. The company needs the $1.6 million addition, through 9680 County Road LLC, to expand its business while maintaining its sales and employment.
  • RE McNamara, through 8615 Roll Road LLC, plans a $2.32 million project to renovate and more than triple the size of an existing warehouse and light manufacturing building, adding 27,000 square feet to the 12,000-square-foot structure to create a facility that it will lease to small businesses. The property is located on 2.54 acres at 8615 Roll.
  • Burke wants to build two 9,000-square-foot mixed-use buildings on a 2-acre property at 6855 Transit Road. The $3.585 million project is part of a larger residential development behind it called Transit Station, but that’s not part of the application.

JR Products

JR Products, owned by Brian and John Roba, is a wholesale distributor of aftermarket parts and accessories for RV, marine and automotive dealers, mostly outside of New York State. The third-generation family-owned company needs more room to store its inventory and improve workflow and logistics, according to its application.

The company cited the increase in supply and logistics costs – as well as the business climate in New York – as the reason why it needs subsidies from the Clarence IDA.

The company said it would not pursue the project here without the tax breaks. According to the application, JR Products already has considered moving to Lancaster or even to Indianapolis – and selling the Clarence facility – because of local working conditions and “corrupt politicians.”

“It is becoming more and more difficult to be nationally competitive and remain here,” the company wrote. “These tax savings will help ensure our continuity of a WNY business.”

Otherwise, “we will continue down the path of relocation,” the company added.

The project will be financed with bank loans, but JR Products is asking for $12,000 in mortgage recording tax savings, $22,000 in sales tax breaks and unspecified property tax incentives. The company, which employs 36, expects to add eight full-time and two part-time jobs.

Officials hope to start construction in June and finish by December.

RE McNamara

RE McNamara wants to turn the existing building on Roll into a 39,000-square-foot office and warehouse hub for small businesses, light manufacturing or individuals needing storage space. The property has previously been used as a lumberyard and retail cabinet supply store.

The contractor and custom cabinetry company – owned by Richard E. McNamara – said in the application that the project has gone over budget because of higher material costs, while its financing options are limited by the projected appraised value of the completed building.

“Getting approved for this assistance will dictate whether we move forward with this project or not,” the company said.

Officials are asking for $11,250 in mortgage tax savings, $74,375 in sales tax benefits,and unspecified property tax breaks. The company, which employs 15, would add 10 full-time jobs within two years.

If approved, McNamara wants to start work in June, finish by December and start filling the building by March 2022.


The Hamburg-based homebuilder owned by David Burke and Thomas Adymy is planning a pair of mixed-use buildings with retail shops alongside an eight-unit patio home development in the rear of the vacant property.

In its application, Burke cited the high cost of construction, rising prices for materials due to shortages caused by the pandemic and the long lease-up time.

“It would not be cost-effective without the IDA participation and benefits,” the company said.

“The Covid-19 environments have hindered commercial real estate speculation,” the company wrote. “Also, the current escalation in the cost of building materials has priced projects like these out of balance cost-wise with typical rent pricing in the area.”

Without help, the company said it would be unable to complete the mixed-use buildings and would just proceed with the patio homes in the rear portion of the property.

“This would cause Burke Homes a loss on our investment and earning potential, as we were anticipating the rent revenue from the tenants on the commercial side,” it said.

Burke is asking for $20,100 in mortgage tax benefits, $136,500 in sales tax savings and unspecified property tax assistance. The developer anticipates 12 full-time and 20 part-time jobs.

The project already was approved by the town, so work could begin in May, with completion and occupancy by October.

Published by The Buffalo News

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