Trustees hold TIF hearing - again
Updated: September 17, 2012 3:12PM
The village’s proposed Dempster/Waukegan tax increment financing district will help stop the deterioration of Prairie View Plaza and help in the redevelopment of the area, a consultant said earlier this month.
Steve Friedman, of S.B. Friedman and Company, speaking Sept. 10 at a public hearing on the village’s third tax increment financing district, said the commercial area included in the district has suffered from declining property values.
The new TIF district would help promote redevelopment in the area, and in particular the shopping center, should eventually help increase the assessed valuation of the area.
“It will over time increase the commercial tax base and lessen dependence on residents,” Friedman said at the hearing held in conjunction with the village’s board meetings.
By providing new funding for public improvements, the TIF district will also help the owner of the Prairie View Plaza renovate the property and attract new retailers.
The hearing was a repeat of one held earlier this year.
Village officials, concerned that property owners inside the boundaries of the district may not have been properly notified of the earlier hearing, are repeating the entire process. A first reading on the ordinances that need to be approved to create the new TIF district is scheduled for Sept. 24, with a final vote Oct. 8.
One resident at the hearing questioned how successful a renovated shopping center will be in attracting new business, particularly with the growth of shopping on the Internet.
But Friedman said about 90 percent of business is still done in brick and mortar stores. He also noted that the Dempster and Waukegan intersection has heavy traffic that could be attracted to a renovated shopping center.
Resident Marlene Worthley noted that the area at one time was very busy, but has declined the past eight or 10 years. However, she said, it is still a “very viable area. If you get more stores in there that’s going to bring more stores in.”
She said that there are no other alternatives to trying to revitalize the shopping center.
“Should we turn it into a parking lot for dogs?” she said.
Trustees also approved at that meeting an ordinance creating a business district with the same boundaries as the TIF district and implemented a new quarter-cent sales tax in the area.
Village Administrator Ryan Horne said recently that the money generated by the tax will be used to make payments to schools to offset any losses they have as a result of the TIF district.