Chicago’s New Mayor Promises TIF Reform

From yesterday’s Sun Times:

Tax Increment financing should be used to create jobs in “blighted communities”— not to reward downtown developers, Mayor Rahm Emanuel said Thursday, vowing to take the “politics out of” former Mayor Richard M. Daley’s favorite economic development tool.

Emanuel has asked former CTA Board Chair and municipal finance expert Carole Brown to lead a panel of experts who will spend the next three months establishing “return-on-investment and performance goals” for every TIF district and project.

Without criticizing Daley directly, Emanuel said he was “shocked” to learn that TIF districts have been multiplying for more than two decades without any job creation standards.

The need for results aside, it’s good to hear a mayor even acknowledge the jobs potential of TIF.

[H/T M.M.]