Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Times Reports Porter County Commissioners Table Airport TIF Proposal

From the Northwest Indiana Times:

Months of work on a program aimed at encouraging development near the Porter County airport was tabled Tuesday by the Board of Commissioners as a result of a last-minute proposal pitched by the city of Valparaiso.
The commissioners agreed to table approval of the proposed tax increment financing district to explore the potential of an airport development zone, pitched a couple weeks ago by Valparaiso Economic Development Director Patrick Lyp.
The move disappointed East Porter County School Corp. Superintendent Rod Gardin, who made an attempt to convince the commissioners to approve the TIF proposal that he and others have worked on for at least eight months.
The TIF proposal, which would capture revenue from new commercial development within the designated area to be invested back within the zone, is preferred because it called for 40 percent of the new tax dollars to be passed along to schools and other local taxing units.
East Porter County schools also benefit from a TIF provision used by Valparaiso to provide educational challenge grant money the district uses for technology improvements, he said.
Porter County Commissioner President John Evans, R-North, said while he appreciates all the preparation work on the TIF proposal done by the county's redevelopment commission, he wants to explore the airport development zone idea so there are no regrets later.
It is also important to have the support of Valparaiso, which will be relied upon to provide utilities to the area, he said.
"I just think we need to do a little more homework," Evans said.