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Legislative Alert: Oppose SB2298 - TIF/REDEVELOPMENT PROJECT AREA

Updated: Feb 28, 2022

APA-IL Legislative Alert

Legislative Committee American Planning Association – Illinois Chapter February 22, 2022


Senate Bill 2298 - the multi-year battle against anti-TIF legislation

sketch of Illinois capitol with the words legislative alert overlaid

The bill, amends the Tax Increment Allocation Redevelopment Act of the Illinois Municipal Code and Property Tax Code.


If passed, SB2298 would negatively impact tax increment financing's (TIF) ability to drive positive economic change in communities.


Senate Floor Amendment 2 (SFA 2) has been added and the bill is currently with the Committee on Assignments.


2/24/22 - Sponsor Sen. Doris Turner (D. 48th District) has been removed! Thank you to those that have reached out to legislators. Keep up the good work and keep advocating! Your voice matters!

2/25/22 - Bill has been re-referred to Assignments.

 

Here is how you can advocate:


#1: Contact your legislators *NEW*

Through the American Planning Association's VoterVoice grassroots advocacy platform, you can connect with legislators and ask them to vote for or against legislation. Connecting with your elected officials plays an important role in building relationships between decision makers, helping us to stay relevant and in the forefront of an elected officials mind by showing our power in numbers.


IT'S EASY - JUST ENTER YOUR INFORMATION AND CLICK SEND!

 

Sponsors: Sen. Ann Gillespie (D. 27th District), Sen. Melinda Bush (D. 31st District), Status: SB2298 has had amendments added to the Bill and is assigned to the Committee on Assignments.

Summary: Amends the Tax Increment Allocation Redevelopment Act of the Illinois Municipal Code.

Provides that a redevelopment plan cannot be adopted or amended without the unanimous support of each member of the Joint Review Board (JRB).


Provides that the redevelopment plan must incorporate a process to allow the Joint Review Board to – at a minimum – provide input concerning how TIF funds are spent to support redevelopment.


Removes or modifies numerous criteria from the definitions of “blighted area” and “conservation area” and prohibits communities that are considering creating a new TIF district to rely on the existence of problematic conditions in their community, including:

  • whether a neighborhood contains dilapidated structures;

  • whether a neighborhood’s buildings lack proper ventilation, light, and sanitary facilities;

  • whether a neighborhood suffers from an outdated or inefficient land use layout; and

  • whether a neighborhood has developed in accordance with a previously-adopted comprehensive plan.

Adds two factors to the determination of a "blighted area" definition, industrial, commercial, and residential buildings or improvements:

  • At least 25% of businesses located in a TIF district have gone bankrupt or left during the previous 10 years; and

  • The community has at least 2 “document refusal[s]” by “developers” to “bid on property” located in the TIF district within the previous 5 years.

Provides that a new or modified redevelopment project area that overlaps with any existing redevelopment project area shall not be approved.


Why you should OPPOSE this bill:

This bill embraces a fundamental misunderstanding of tax increment financing (“TIF”) and the benefits TIF provides to communities across the state on a daily basis. If either bill becomes law, APA-IL believes that both the use of TIF by municipalities and the ability of TIF to drive positive economic change Illinois communities will decrease markedly.


The APA-IL has the following concerns with SB2298’s proposed changes to the Tax Increment Allocation Redevelopment Act of the Illinois Municipal Code:

  • Outsized Role for the Joint Review Board.SB2298 dramatically expands the role of the joint review board (“JRB”) in every aspect of TIF creation and administration. Requiring unanimous JRB consent to create a new TIF district, amend an existing TIF district, and approve redevelopment project costs will impede a community’s ability to translate TIF resources into positive economic growth. Businesses seeking to use TIF revenue to encourage meaningful community investment will effectively be required to negotiate redevelopment terms with each individual taxing district or, more likely, forego their project altogether.

  • Determination of a blighted or conservation area. SB2298 adds two ill-defined factors to the determination of blighted area and removes or modifies various definitions of "blighted area" and "conservation area" for improved and vacant areas. The additional two factors and definition changes appear designed to significantly limit when and where TIF districts could be established, and equally as troubling, SB2298 ignores problematic conditions that have long supported TIF district creation, including:

(1) whether a neighborhood contains dilapidated structures;


(2) whether a neighborhood’s buildings lack proper ventilation, light, and sanitary facilities;


(3) whether a neighborhood suffers from an outdated or inefficient land use layout; and


(4) whether a neighborhood has developed in accordance with a previously-adopted comprehensive plan.

  • Overlapping Redevelopment Project Areas and Distribution of Surplus Funds. Provisions of SB2298 that disallow overlapping project areas would affect countless redevelopment projects currently underway and the timeline outlined for distribution of surplus funds does not account for the varying fiscal years and internal controls in Illinois local government.

The American Planning Association – Illinois Chapter (APA-IL) stands with the Illinois Tax Increment Association (ITIA) to advocate for legislation that helps communities achieve their full potential. We are committed to work with Illinois legislators to create a greater understanding of TIF and how this valuable tool can help build great communities in Illinois.


Recommendation: Contact your state legislators to OPPOSE SB2298.


 

Questions? Please contact David Silverman, AICP, APA-IL Legislative Chair at dsilverman@ancelglink.com or Tom Henderson, Executive Director of the Illinois Tax Increment Association at thenderson@illinois-tif.com. Find out more about the APA-IL Legislative Committee at ilapa.org/legislative-committee

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