Moline Public Hearing On Tax Incentive Districts - News and Weather For The Quad Cities -

Moline Public Hearing On Tax Incentive Districts

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Dozens of people came out for a public hearing during the Moline City Council meeting Tuesday evening. The talking point is 3 tax incentive finance or TIF districts in Moline that would be used to spur development.

The largest TIF district is for the revitalization of SouthPark Mall. The city is not giving a dollar amount for the incentive, but the tax break would apply only to the mall. The goal is to encourage SouthPark's owner to do major upgrades, because the mall's property value is dropping by 3.3% every year. However, people questioned the proposed TIF by saying the mall's owner should be at meetings to discuss their plans.

"They are asking for huge sums of money to help them with their developments. Yet they haven't shown any consideration or courtesy to the people who control the purse strings, much less to the tax payers who provide the funds," says Sandy O'Neill.

The TIF district that the majority of people at council were upset about is at the Highway 150-Highway 6 interchange. It is right next to the airport and includes the old Horace Mann school property. The city would like developers to build light industrial and commercial businesses in the area. No one has submitted plans for the area, so the TIF amount is not known yet. What has so many fired up is that a possible concrete recycling plant might go near the TIF district. The plant would not receive a tax incentive, but people from neighboring Coal Valley are worried about the impact a concrete recycling plant would have on the area.

"I moved out of the Quad Cities to Coal Valley, because I wanted the privacy," says Les Helier, "I do not want the semis and traffic, so I'm against anything like that."

"In my opinion it's not the best land usage," adds Drue Mielke.

"I have handicap kids back there and I don't want a rock crusher back there," says Ronald Summers.

Another tax incentive district that people spoke out about is land that is owned by Genesis. It's on 41 street, right behind Moline High School. Genesis is asking for $1.5-million in tax breaks to build a medical complex. It would include offices for primary physicians and the wooded area would be used recreational trails.

No decisions were made on the TIF districts. Council will discuss whether or not to give the 3 areas tax incentives in a few weeks.