ST. JOHN | The town’s Redevelopment Commission had a banner financial year during 2012, according to a report prepared by the accounting firm of Cender & Co. LLC of Merrillville and delivered to the commission Thursday by St. John Town Manager Steve Kil.
During fiscal year 2012, the commission paid off all its debt by retiring one economic development bond; received more than $800,000 in TIF dollars and ended the year with more than a half-million dollars cash on hand.
The Redevelopment Commission includes all five members of the Town Council as well as a nonvoting member each from the Hanover Central School Board and the Lake Central School Board. During 2012, the school board members were John DeVries of Lake Central School Corp. and Pat Kocot of the Hanover Central School Corp.
The commission administers and manages the St. John department of redevelopment.
St. John’s tax increment financing district generates funds through property taxes paid by businesses located in that district. A portion of those property taxes is returned by the state to the town to use for improvements and redevelopment within the TIF district.
“As of Sept. 10, 2012, the commission has no outstanding debt payable from tax increment revenues,” Kil read from the annual report summary to the town executive, Michael Forbes, president of the St. John Town Council.
To achieve that status, the commission used a TIF surplus to pay off the Economic Development Revenue Bonds Series 2005 that were issued to help finance the St. John Marketplace project. The bonds were sold for $2.52 million in 2005.
First the commission made its February and August principal and interest payment of $261,963.42 “in a timely manner,” according to the report. Then the outstanding balance for principal and interest of $1,671,386.30 was paid to the bond’s trustee, Centier Bank, on Sept. 10.
During 2012, the Redevelopment Commission also received $806,766.13 in TIF revenue, according to the report.
After all expenses were paid, the annual report indicates that the St. John TIF allocation area fund ended the year with a cash balance of $599,425.78.
In other business, the Redevelopment Commission elected officers at its first meeting of 2013.
Mark Barenie was re-elected commission president and Forbes was elected to another term as vice president. Larry Bustamante was elected secretary to replace Gregory Volk.
Ken Gembala is the fifth Redevelopment Commission voting member.
A replacement for Kocot will be named later this year because she is no longer a Hanover Central School Board member.