FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Staff from the City of Springfield’s Economic Development office and Zone 1 Councilwoman Phyllis Ferguson will host a public input meeting 5:30-6:30 p.m., Thursday, Aug. 30 at White River Brewing Company located at 505 W. Commercial Street, for Commercial Street businesses, residents and other stakeholders to discuss proposed projects to be funded by revenues captured from the Commercial Street Tax Increment Financing (TIF) Plan.
Annual TIF revenues have grown from $160,000 in 2015 to a projected $180,000 in 2019. The fund currently has a balance approaching $500,000.
Potential projects could include improvements to public parking lots, alleys, upgraded crosswalk and driveway to C-Street Market/parking area, Blaine Street improvements and a targeted facade loan program.
In the past, C-Street TIF revenues have partially funded the purchase and construction of Frisco Lane and alleyway improvements.
“Commercial Street residents, property owners and business owners have identified more than $5 million in public improvement projects that they’d like to see on C-Street,” says Economic Development Director Sarah Kerner. “The purpose of this annual meeting is to identify and prioritize projects to be funded with TIF revenues.”
Kerner says once the C-Street stakeholders flesh out the priority projects, City staff will make their recommendation to City Council, which will in turn make a decision regarding the expenditure of TIF funds.
However, she adds, just because there is money to be spent does not mean that it must be spent.
“We also have options to bank all of the revenues for future projects or bank a portion of it and spend a portion,” she says.
Background on the C-Street TIF
The Commercial Street Historic District was approved by Springfield City Council in early 2006 with the recommendation to use tax increment financing for the C-Street redevelopment plan. The C-Street TIF Plan was adopted by Council in April 2008. The redevelopment area’s boundaries are Grant Avenue to the west and Janss Lumber to the east.
Tax increment financing provides for the redirection of the incremental increase in sales and property tax revenue resulting from a redevelopment project to be used for public improvement project-related costs, infrastructure and capital improvements. No TIF revenues may be used for private projects.
“TlF is based on the premise that there will be an increase in the value of real property, new jobs and other economic activity within the redevelopment area as redevelopment occurs,” Kerner says. “As the property is improved, the assessed value of real property in the redevelopment area increases above the base level. By capturing the increase in the assessed value of the property over the base level, a tax increment is produced.”
These tax increments, also referred to as "payments in lieu of taxes" or PILOTS, are transferred to a special allocation fund that is administered by the city. The City and county also transfers 50 percent of all incremental sales tax revenues to this fund. The money collected in the special allocation fund is then used to pay directly for the redevelopment project costs or to retire bonds or other obligations issued to pay such costs.
For more information, please contact Assistant Director of Public Information & Civic Engagement Melissa Haase at 417-864-1003 or Senior Planner/Brownfields Coordinator Olivia Hough at 417-864-1092 or [email protected].