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District News

LM Board OKs TIF payment agreement

Posted on: January 9, 2020
photo of plat map

The Little Miami Board of Education approved an agreement Wednesday, Jan. 8 that may help bring additional economic development to the corner of Ohio 48 and US 22-3.

The Board voted 4-0 to approve a compensation agreement brought to them by the Hamilton Township Trustees as part of a tax incremental financing (TIF) package. The trustees met on Dec. 18, 2019 and approved a TIF for 21 parcels at the northeast corner of Ohio 48 and US 22-3. Little Miami Board member Wayne Siebert voted “present” on the measure.

A TIF is tool used by taxing entities to exempt the owners of real estate parcels in a designated area from paying property tax for a certain time period. In lieu of paying those taxes, property owners make service payments to the entity, in this case, Hamilton Township, which in turn uses these funds to make road, sewer, utility and other infrastructure improvements in the TIF area. Because the Little Miami Local School District and the Warren County Career Center would be affected by the tax exemption, both must approve a compensation agreement.

The “Hoptown” TIF agreement would exempt 100 percent of tax collection on the 21 parcels for 30 years. In return, Hamilton Township agrees to make compensation payments to Little Miami in the amount of 25 percent of the real estate taxes that the district would have collected on the improved land.

LM Superintendent Greg Power said he felt concerned about the impact that the TIF would create on the district’s budget, with student numbers rising each year and state funding that has remained flat.

“The district does not want to be an impediment to development,” Power said. “But with our enrollment growth showing no signs of stopping, it is difficult to sign away property tax increases that could help us keep pace with that growth.”

All five Board members said they were reluctant to accept the compensation agreement, but said they knew if they did not, they would receive no payments at all. 

In 2018, the Little Miami Board supported a TIF agreement for the re-development of 104 acres at the former Sumco plant on Grandin Road. Plans for re-development have since fallen through.