GREEN Several complex financial issues have been resolved between the city of Green and Green Local Schools.
Discussions began late last year about a Community Reinvestment Agreement (CRA) and a tax increment financing (TIF) agreement. The CRA involved the relocation of Seco Machine into the city and the TIF agreement related to past payments the schools said the city did not pay.
TIF agreements are a redirection of taxes and focus to address public infrastructure improvements. The city and schools entered into an agreement in 2003, which was amended in 2006. The state then changed the school funding formula, which resulted in a discrepancy on how the TIF agreement should be calculated when it came time for the city to pay the schools.
The agreement reads the city will pay an additional $635,108 for tax years 2006 through 2014. In December 2016, the city paid the schools $550,000 when negotiations were ongoing about the agreement as a good faith payment for tax year 2015, but based on terms of the new agreement, the city will pay an additional $94,404 for 2015.
The city anticipates total estimated payments to the schools in 2017 of $805,000 for tax year 2016.
In addition to payment, the city and schools came to agreement that on all existing and new TIFs, the city will provide the schools a payment each year equal to 85 percent of the school’s portion of real property taxes that would have been received without the financing.
The purpose of a CRA is an abatement or exemption to paying taxes to create an economic incentive for a business.
The city and schools agreed on terms for the city to compensate the schools when granting abatements under the city’s CRAs. The new terms read that all new CRAs will provide the schools a payment each year equal to 65 percent of the school’s portion of real property taxes that would have been received without the CRA. The city also agrees not to grant any CRA abatements on residential developments.
With these new terms, both city leaders and school officials are pleased.
"This global agreement really is a testament to our strong, working relationship and our mutual desire to do what is best for our community," Green Mayor Gerard Neugebauer said. "Through our many discussions, the team was focused on the value that our community places on education."
Green Local Schools Superintendent Jeff Miller agrees with Neugebauer about the working relationship the schools and the city have.
"The district is appreciative of the spirit of collaboration, due diligence and persistence from both the city and school district in reaching our agreement. It has been a somewhat lengthy and very complex process" Miller said. "Quality, high performing districts such as Green are a huge driver of economic growth in any township, municipality or city. Moving forward the school district is eager to work with the city to find alternative ways to foster economic development in our thriving community."