Nichols, NY (WIVT/WBGH) – Catholic Charities of Tompkins and Tioga received word that its rent will be increasing almost three-fold, and now the organization may need to change locations.

Catholic Charities has leased 139 Roki Boulevard in Nichols for the past 10 years.

In 2019, the organization signed a five-year lease with the Town of Nichols, agreeing to pay over $1,400 for the use of six classrooms each month.

The Town Board also approved the use of the kitchen free of charge, under the condition that Catholic Charities would replace outdated equipment.

On November 30th, Catholic Charities was informed that its rent would increase to over $4,000 a month, which is a 171% increase compared to what the non-profit has paid in the past.

Executive Director, Renee Spear says that Catholic Charities was not aware of the increase until after it had already finalized its budget for 2023.

Spear says that if the rent hike stands, CCTT will need to temporarily suspend its charitable work in Tioga County while it seeks a new home.

Executive Director of Catholic Charities of Tioga and Tompkins, Renee Spear says, “We would have to pull back a lot of finances that we use to support individuals. And to be realistic, we couldn’t even really come up with that additional 31 thousand dollars.”

Spear adds that the building does not have a mortgage, meaning the only costs to the Town are insurance, utilities, and staff for grounds work.

In addition, she says that the Nichols Town Court and the Tioga County Historical Society occupy half of the offices in the same building, but do not pay rent.

There is a Nichols Town Board meeting tonight at 7 p.m. where community members can voice their opinions.

NewsChannel 34 called the Town of Nichols Supervisor and left a message but has not received a response.