|Mayor Battle Leads New Era of Fiscal Responsibility
City's Debt Reduction Policy Closes TIF 3 in West Huntsville
January 24, 2012
(Huntsville, AL)-For the past three years, Mayor Tommy Battle's leadership has provided the City of Huntsville with unparalleled successes in economic security. His fiscally conservative policies, triple A credit ratings, and balanced budgets have placed the City in the top tier of well-managed municipalities.
Now, Mayor Battle is pleased to announce the end of another debt for the City-the closing of the Tax Incremental Financing District (TIF 3) in West Huntsville. Formed in 2000, TIF 3 was created to support new schools in the area from Research Park Boulevard west to County Line Road. Funds in TIF 3 provided $30 million to build Columbia High School and Providence Elementary School, $10 million for roads and infrastructure in the school zones, and incentivized residential and commercial development in the western corridor.
"We are about eleven years ahead of schedule in closing this TIF," said Mayor Tommy Battle. "This is part of our continued effort to reduce debt and to restore public confidence in the way the City of Huntsville spends taxpayer money. This is one more step in our plan to manage your dollars wisely."
TIF 3 funds have generated $58.5 million in revenue. In closing the debt, the City will save some $15 million in interest. While the TIF was formed to provide capital income to build new schools, it has provided an additional $21 million to City and County schools.
In closing TIF 3, the City will return $2.2 million to Huntsville City Schools, $1.2 million to the Madison County Commission, and $1.5 million to City operating and capital funds. Beginning next year, Huntsville City Schools will receive $4.7 million, Madison County Commission will receive $2.8 million, and the City will receive $3.2 million each year from property taxes formerly in the TIF.
The market value of all properties in TIF 3 is estimated to exceed $2 billion. Much of that value was spawned by the road and infrastructure projects made possible by the TIF. New schools brought new families and housing, business opportunities, construction projects and jobs. The building surge began with the new Target on University and included the new Kroger on Jeff Road, Redstone Gateway, major growth in Research Park, and expanded residential areas on Martin and Zierdt Roads.
"This is a success story for the City," said Randy Taylor, Director of Finance. "We have met our debt obligations and now the tremendous growth of the past 10 years will help schools, the City and the county provide services to our residents and businesses."
The City of Huntsville has three remaining TIFs with about $66 million in combined debt.
"I would hope that all of the other TIFs would be as successful as TIF 3," said Mayor Battle. "We have spent the past three years demanding the highest accountability. Our track record shows a new era of fiscal responsibility."
For more information, contact Kelly Cooper Schrimsher, Director of Communications, Office of the Mayor, 256-427-5006 w, 256-503-5032 c, firstname.lastname@example.org.
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