Kentucky’s General Assembly has approved amending and expanding the state’s tax increment financing (TIF) program, a public financing method that allows qualified public projects to use future gains in state and local tax revenues to finance the current improvements that will create those gains.
With the passage of HB 310, Kentucky has extended the window of time that certain TIF projects have to activate, increasing that time from five years to 10 years after the commencement date. The bill also expands the TIF program to include mixed-use development projects located in a research park owned by a public university and to include projects located within three miles of a military base that houses, deploys or employs at least 25,000 military personnel, their families, military retirees or civilian employees.
“HB 310 allows us to provide additional time to several promising economic development projects that have been delayed by the challenging credit crisis our country has faced during the economic recession,” said Gov. Steve Beshear. “Additionally, by broadening the TIF-eligible areas to include university-owned research parks and mixed-use development around Kentucky military bases we are increasing our ability to create new economic development opportunities.”
UK President Lee T. Todd Jr. said using TIF as an economic development tool will enable UK to build new lab and incubator space at Coldstream Research Campus that will house spinoff companies created by UK faculty and attract companies interested in licensing technologies developed at UK.
Previously approved TIF projects that are eligible to benefit from the extension include Ovation in Newport, as well as Center City, Nucleus and Museum Plaza in Louisville.