The Clinton Herald, Clinton, Iowa

February 26, 2014

City holds off on TIF ordinance

By Brenden West Assistant Editor
The Clinton Herald

---- — CLINTON -- It’s still early enough in the new term to set tones, and Councilman Ed O’Neill publicly established another precedent for himself regarding the Lincolnway Industrial Railpark on Tuesday night.

The Clinton City Council was scheduled at its meeting to go through second and third considerations for an ordinance allowing the city to apportion property taxes collected at the park toward a special fund. Infrastructural upgrades to the park are expected, and the city will adopt tax increment financing ordinances to help finance those needs.

Clinton already has development agreements specifying TIF in place with current railpark occupants Nevada Railroad Materials and RAIL.ONE. Both were specified in Tuesday’s ordinance discussion.

O’Neill objected to fast tracking multiple readings in one council meeting, motioning not to suspend rulings on the ordinance. He said this allows citizens “proper” time to consider decisions facing the city.

“I’m always going to be opposed to doing two or three readings right in a row,” O’Neill said. His motion passed 4-3, meaning the city will go through another reading of the ordinance before adopting or denying. “I don’t think it’s necessary.”

The ordinance states excess taxes collected (the “tax increment”) will be allocated to a tax increment fund. When expenses are paid, according to the ordinance, property tax payments by organizations within the Lincolnway development will be paid as normal.