Tax Dollars And Sense

Unaccountability in the TIF program

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If an economic development project is supposed to create jobs, but no one is around to monitor it, should they still get our tax dollars?

Central to the success of the economic development program Tax-Increment Financing (TIF), is job creation and retention, as increased employment is an indicator of economic growth and improved public well-being.  But when we dig deeper into the specifics of many of the TIF Redevelopment Agreements and the “Employment Certifications” provided by developers to the City, a couple of alarming patterns begin to emerge.

More TIF money spent without transparency

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In the City Council meeting held today, the council voted to enact two ordinances approving new TIF projects. With so much taxpayer money being spent, one would expect a transparent and thorough analysis of the projects to ensure they are worthwhile.  But for the most part, specifics are unavailable to the public.

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