By Sean Rice
Celina administration officials are pondering creating a tax increment financing (TIF) district along Havemann Road to take advantage of the potential property tax revenue boost from the planned Super Wal-Mart.
Community development consultant Kent Bryan told a committee of Celina City Council last week of a plan to create a TIF district that would possibly encompass the new Wal-Mart site on the south side of Havemann Road, and the Celina Industrial Park near the intersection with Grand Lake Road.
The TIF procedure allows a municipality to divert a portion of property taxes normally paid by owners in the district to a special fund designated for public improvements benefiting the district. It is not a new tax or an increase.
When a property in the TIF district has a value increase, the taxes paid on that increased value are diverted to the new account. TIF districts can run from 15 to 30 years.
Celina City Council created the city's first TIF district last year in the area near West Bank Road. The district was set up before the multi-million dollar Westlake Village project hit the tax rolls and is expected to generate more than $100,000 because of the large change in property tax payments. Those funds may be used to help fund the West Bank Road boardwalk project. Bryan announced the idea to create the TIF district as a way to fund a proposed Grand Lake Road widening and resurfacing project in 2007.
Bryan and grant writer Ron Puthoff applied Wednesday for Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) small cities grants for resurfacing projects in each 2005, 2006 and 2007, totaling $1.2 million.
If a Havemann Road TIF is created, enough funds will be set aside by 2007 to pay the 20 percent match for the ODOT grant. The Grand Lake Road widening project calls for a new center turn lane, similar to the recent Havemann Road improvements.
The grant sent in Wednesday also seeks 80 percent funding for a 2005 project that would resurface and widen Ash Street, from Market to Main Street. And it seeks 80 percent funding for a 2006 project to resurface Touvelle Street, from Main to Summit Street.
Bryan explained that Ohio Public Works Commission Issue II funding can be used for match money for the 2005 and 2006 proposed projects. This year, $225,000 in Issue II funds are being used to resurface Mackinaw Street, from Touvelle to Wayne Street.
Bryan told The Daily Standard this morning the details on the proposed TIF district will be worked out in the next 30 days. There is no legislation regarding the ODOT grants or proposed TIF on Celina City Council's agenda for the meeting tonight.