Cities Giving Tax Incentives To Help Businesses Is The Norm - News and Weather For The Quad Cities -

Cities Giving Tax Incentives To Help Businesses Is The Norm

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We've seen a lot of growth in The Quad Cities with bigger developments projects taking shape and a lot of those projects getting tax rebates or TIF. But has that become the norm for cities to give this financial help to seal the deal?

In East Moline, leaders are considering giving a tax break for the former New Holland property.

In Moline, the Amtrak Station is just one of several projects looking for TIF money.

And in Davenport, the developer for the former dock restaurant making his case for the same thing. He wants help paying for the 27-million dollar project.

Davenport Mayor, Bill Gluba, says, "it's becoming the norm for developers to ask for the tax incentives." While he believes it is not getting out of hand here, he says it has in other parts of the state.

City leaders haven't come to a decision to grant that TIF yet, but Matt Flynn With the Planning and Economic Development team says a TIF is a great tool to not only help developers but the city as well.

"We always look for creative ways to assist and financing projects that help enhance our tax base helps put people to work and add to our quality of life, TIF is just one of those tools that's geared best for situations where you're looking at redevelopment for an old community like Davenport, it's an effective tool." said Flynn.

Ray Forsythe, Planning Director for the city of Moline says It's been hard in recent years for developers to finance, but that the city only gives TIF's as a last resort to help businesses seal the deal and come to the area.

"In the last several years it's been really difficult to get money for projects. Lending was difficult, so the city came in and provided TIF incentives or sales tax incentives as a way to be the last funding source into a project to make it work," he said.

There are state laws and regulations cities need to strictly go by in order to give those TIFs.

Iowa has recently changed its TIF laws. Cities usually lock in tax rebates for developers while a project builds then collect the full share of property taxes once the TIF expires. But now that's changed and the state deems that deal to be illegal.