In “Our View: Re:New’s [sic] work is just beginning,” the Daily Chronicle appears to be under the impression that all the downtown work done since 2008 has cost $10.8 million in Tax Increment Financing (TIF) dollars.
Is this so? No. We started with land acquisition, architectural improvements, railway wayside horns, a skating rink, a pocket park and a $2 million parking lot even before that $10.8 million GO bond was issued.
Still, let’s do some figurin’.
Here are the total expenditures in the Central Area TIF, recapped from a previous post involving TIF annual reports.
Has all of this money been spent on the downtown? No. For the above fiscal years, roughly $12 million has gone to debt service, $7.5 million to other taxing bodies for approved capital projects, and $1.7 million into the city’s general fund. Kishwaukee College has received $200,000 per year for job training costs, and a couple projects on Sycamore Road (Joyce, First Rockford Group) amounting to $362,400 were approved during this period.
This means probably about $14 million went directly into downtown improvements and fiascoes for the three fiscal years I’ve presented.
Furthermore, there has been spending on the downtown both before and since; plus, I’d be inclined to add whatever portion of the debt can be ascribed to downtown projects as well.
For FY2011, I’ve accessed 9 months of TIF spending online. (The August 23, 2010 agenda packet, which would include the July check register, is missing from the city’s website; and of course May and June 2011 are not yet available.) Even without the July 2010 construction expenditures, the tally is over $8 million for the year.
If you want to know how much DeKalb is planning to spend over the life of this TIF, check out the 2008 Amendment to the TIF Redevelopment Plan and Project, pp. 24-33.
The following are the Central TIF lists of vendors from the past three TIF annual reports. Click to access the album and larger images. Notice the new taxing body we’ve picked up!