A revised version of Great Bend Neighborhood Revitalization Plan, a property tax rebate program targeting new buildings and improvements, was given the OK by the City Council Monday night. The action followed a public hearing on the matter that was reconvened from the March 6 council meeting.
The updated plan is very close to what the plan was like in the past with a five-year and a 10-year section, City Attorney Bob Suelter said. It covers most of the city, except areas that fall into existing Residential Housing Incentive Districts (RHIDs), another program offering tax breaks for development.
Now, interlocal agreements must be signed with all overlapping taxing entities. Ultimately, the Kansas Attorney General’s Office has to sign off on it.
The final plan differs from the draft presented March 6 which contained only one benefit area made up of most of the real estate east of Washington Street in a five-year plan. The council wanted to increase the five-year plan to a 10-year one in the primary target zone, while incorporating the bulk of the remainder of the city to the west in a secondary five-year arrangement.
The NRP is a Kansas Department of Commerce program and, according to state statutes, Suelter said it cannot cover areas already enrolled in other incentive programs. Areas currently in RHIDs are: The Reserves at Trail Ridge apartment complex across from Wal-Mart; north and west of 24th and Main Street in the Stoneridge housing and golf course development; and parts of Amber Meadows.
Also excluded in Great Bend will be some parts of town that fall in the flood control area.
Information taken from the city’s plan notes the 2016 appraised valuation on all real estate is $261,660,820 in the primary target area and $471,373,280 in the secondary area.
On March 6, Mayor Mike Allison opened the public hearing on the Neighborhood Revitalization Plan. City Attorney Suelter reported on the draft plan that has been prepared and submitted to the council.
After discussion, the council decided that the public hearing should be recessed until the March 20 meeting so the changes could be made. This set the stage for this Monday night.
The city’s previous NRP had expired at the end of 2016 and the council had voted last fall to let it lapse. However, after a plea from the local economic development agency Central Kansas Development Inc., the council reconsidered that action in February.
The NRP program is designed to give property owners the opportunity to receive a tax rebate on the additional property taxes incurred from constructing new buildings or making improvements to existing ones. Depending on the program, the rebates can be offered for five or 10 years and the amount of the rebate decreases each year.
It covers residential, commercial and industrial structures.
For more information on the plan, visit the City Office at 1209 Williams St. or call 620-793-4111.