This week’s featured question was submitted for City Administrator Dave Johnson
The question reads:
“How do development incentives work from the city? Are there certain qualifications a small business or city citizen has to meet to qualify for one? What are they? Are their requirements for timelines, material to be sent to the city, etc.? Thank you Mr. Johnson!”
Answer as given by Johnson:
“A development incentive is requested by a written project proposal submitted to the City’s Redevelopment Authority (RDA) outlining the need, the overall project cost, and the number of jobs that are created by the proposed project.
“Development incentives are funded through Tax Increment Financing (TIF). In order to be eligible for a TIF incentive the proposed project must be located within a Tax Increment District (TID).
“The TIF development incentive can take the form of upfront cash payments for project expenses (building construction, streets, parking lots, sewer, water, storm water, sidewalks, and lighting), pay-as-you-go payments (so much a year for a specified number of years), as well as land acquisition.
“TIF development incentives cannot be used for salaries, employee training, or business development or product development costs. Infrastructure such as streets, parking lots, sewer, water, storm water, sidewalks, and lighting can be funded through TIF for projects that are outside of a TID but within a half mile of a TID boundary. The TIF incentive is paid for by the tax increment gained through the increased value of the development throughout the life of the TID. The amount of the development incentive is determined by need, the overall project cost, the amount of tax increment to be generated by the project through the life of the TID, and the number of jobs that are created by the proposed project.
“The development incentive must be recommended to the Common Council by the Redevelopment Authority and be approved by the Common Council.”
Have a question or concern you would like to address? Simply send your question or concern to firstname.lastname@example.org along with an indication of which entity your question or concern pertains to. Current participants are the Merrill Police Department, Merrill Fire Department, Tomahawk Police Department, Lincoln County Administrative Coordinator Randy Scholz, Merrill City Administrator Dave Johnson and Merrill Area Housing Authority Director Paul Russell. Please note: Those who submit to the ‘Ask an Official’ feature remain anonymous.