Elmer W. Davis Inc. v. Commissioner, Taxation and Finance
Justice Thomas Mercure
Roofing firm Elmer W. Davis Inc. has a facility in Rochester. In 2005, the County of Monroe Industrial Development Agency appointed Davis its agent in a project to renovate its facility. Among other equipment, Davis bought several trucks that were used for roofing jobs within and outside of Monroe County. The Tax Appeal Tribunal sustained a $20,000 assessment based on Davis' nonpayment of sales tax on the trucks. It found Davis did not show the trucks an integral part of the project, or that their use outside the county was consented to by other municipalities in which Davis performed roofing jobs. Discussing General Municipal Law §854(4), the Third Department annulled the tribunal's determination. Its construction of the term "project" was contrary to the purpose and language of §854(4). Agreeing with Davis, the panel found the "location" of the project at issue to be the physical location of Davis' Rochester facility. That location was not altered by the temporary absence of moveable equipmentincluding trucksused on roofing jobs, whether inside or outside of Monroe County. Consent from other municipalities was required only if Davis acquired additional real property outside of the agency's jurisdiction.