I am hoping that eventually the Palladium-Item will publish a comprehensive study and report on the Tax Abatement program. I don't recall ever seeing a report of the net benefits of this program. I doubt that many of us really understand the way the program operates nor do we know what is the city giving up in tax benefits in return for the benefits the program is supposed to provide. I believe those receiving the abatements are required to submit annual reports of what they have been able to do with the tax benefits. But is there an annual report that puts a dollar value on the net benefits reported so that the taxpayers can understand what they are getting in return for the tax dollars they are forgiving during the abatement periods?
A bar graph showing tax dollars abated annually along with a dollar value of return from the abatements and the net to the city could be understood by most of us.
Good idea! Let's see if these abatements are truly helping the community or are these companies using them for the time they are allowed, making a quick buck,and hitting the road?
There are many misunderstandings about the "Tax Abatement." It is actually a tax deferrment on new equipment that otherwise would not have been on the tax roles. When a company is proposing to purchase a piece of equipment, they can apply for an "abatement." This gives the company no money but allows them to pay a lesser tax while implementing the use of the equipment. The first year starts at 10% of the full tax and ramps up to 100% of the tax on that piece of equipment. The purchased equipment must either provide new jobs or retain existing jobs. Policing companies who violate these agreements is not the company's responsibility but that of city council. They are provided with records that confirm a company's compliance with the contract. I agree with all of you about the misunderstandings in this program.