Creating new looks for businesses helps revitalize a commercial area. That’s the purpose of the Dyer Redevelopment Commission’s Façade Improvement Program that was launched in 2011.
The redevelopment commission established the façade program as a means of assisting businesses located in the Dyer tax increment financing district with beautification projects, says Rick Eberly, Dyer town manager.
Businesses in the TIF district can apply for this 50/50 matching grant program and use the funding to make building exterior, landscaping and signage improvements.
Applicants can apply for up to $25,000 in funding through the façade improvement program. The business must match the amount from the grant to make those exterior changes, Eberly says.
The Dyer Redevelopment Commission's Facade Improvement program awarded the commercial businesses at 1512-1514 Joliet St. the first grant under the program. Those businesses, including Hog Haven and Hoosier Sports of Indiana, underwent a facelift thanks to that grant from the program.
“It's a very nice facade renovation,” says Eberly.
Town officials say they’re hoping the Joliet Street project will inspire others to participate.
The Dyer Redevelopment Commission provides guidance and funding for such projects that help revitalize and boost economic development in town. Five members comprise the Dyer Redevelopment Commission, each appointed to one-year terms.
Currently those members are Dr. Jethroe Smith, president; John Dunn, executive secretary; Tony Brummel; Ed Nowak; and William Wilson. Connee Trepton is the Dyer Town Council liaison to the commission.
The duties and powers of the Redevelopment Commission are defined in Indiana Code 36-7-14, “Redevelopment of Blighted Areas Generally, Redevelopment Commissions.”
The commission members’ duties include investigating, studying and surveying blighted areas; combating the causes of blighted areas; promoting the use of land in the manner that best serves the interest of the municipality and its inhabitants; and selecting and acquiring blighted areas to be redeveloped.
The Dyer Redevelopment Commission can also provide financial assistance (including grants and loans) to neighborhood development corporations to permit them to provide financial assistance to construct, rehabilitate, or repair commercial property within the district.
As part of their duties, the members of the Dyer Redevelopment Commission controls the funds generated by the town’s TIF district. Those funds are the part of property taxes paid by businesses in the TIF district. The taxes are sent to the State of Indiana, which returns a portion of that money to the town to use for redevelopment.