Schools to try again to be removed from TIF district

2013-01-19T00:00:00Z Schools to try again to be removed from TIF districtJoyce Russell joyce.russell@nwi.com, (219) 762-1397, ext. 2222 nwitimes.com

PORTAGE | Portage Township Schools will try again to carve itself out of the city's tax increment financing district.

Superintendent E. Ric Frataccia will compose a formal letter to the city's Redevelopment Commission asking the city remove the schools from the district. He asked school board member Bill Fekete, a non-voting member on the commission, to deliver the letter.

Frataccia said the school district is losing substantial property tax money from properties within the district. He had calculated that loss last year as about $1 million in tax revenue.

Frataccia first brought up the subject last August when the city expanded the Southport Allocation District, but a formal request has never been brought to the Redevelopment Commission.

The creation of a TIF district can have an impact on school revenue. When a district is formed or expanded, the portion of the real property taxes sent to the TIF districts are those above the base value of the property when the district is created. As the property value increases over time, the school district does not receive those additional funds.

John Shepherd, the city's economic development consultant, said sending a letter and making the request official, is the proper procedure for the school district, but that it would be up to the five-member Redevelopment Commission to make any decision on the matter.

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