Council Secures Extra Funding

Staff Writer

The village of New Bremen completed a first reading Monday night for an ordinance that will ensure they will be able to reap the monetary benefits of the investments they are making to their infrastructure.

Ordinance 2019-9-21, granting exemption from real property taxation and designating infrastructure improvements, was motioned and seconded by Brent Richter and Bob Parker at Monday’s council meeting.

The ordinance approves the village for going into non-school Tax Increment Financing (TIF) program that will follow the Community Reinvestment Area (CRA) for the Crown Equipment Corporation expansion. The TIF will not go into effect until the CRA expires in 10 years, however, the agreement is needed now to secure the current property value of Crown.

According to Economic Development Director Angela Hamberg, securing the property value as it stands right now will ensure that any additional value added because of the expansion will be allocated to the TIF fund that will be created.

Paperwork given out during the meeting explained that under this type of TIF — non-school — the portions of the service payments attributed to the school districts millage would be given to the school and the remainder would be deposited into a TIF fund to be used toward, “public infrastructure improvements.”

The TIF program will be good for 30 years, and according to Mayor Jeff Pape, the person who benefits most from the program is New Bremen. After the meeting, he explained that with this program the expected property tax increase for Crown will stay in the village exclusively and won’t be available for the county or other groups to get their hands on when property taxes are paid. They will instead only have access to the same amount they are receiving now.

“The way we look at it is that we did — Angela did all the work — to get the abatement for Crown,” Pape said. “The county didn’t do a thing but they’re sitting there getting ready to take the money for what we did, so we’re saying we’re going to take a piece of the action.”

He went on to say that the county didn’t provide the village with any funds to go toward the $6 million substation that is being added to the village and that is something that in 30 years, if the village determines there is a need for another substation or any other infrastructure improvements, the funds from this TIF fund could go toward that.

“At the end of the day, if they didn’t improve the land then they would be getting the same amount of money as they did before,” said councilmember Jacob Larger.

He added that the county isn’t losing money by New Bremen using this program, but they’re aren’t gaining more through it either.

“If the county is getting $200 today, they’re getting $200 for the next 30 years,” he explained. “And then at the end of that 30, it jumps out to that new evaluation of $1,000. They’re not losing money, but they’re not gaining appreciable tax value.”

New Bremen isn’t the first to use this program in Auglaize County as Wapakoneta used a TIF for Pratt Industries to develop on the land they are at. In Shelby County, Jackson Center used a TIF to help with the Airstream expansion.

Larger also mentioned that utilizing a TIF agreement is suitable for large expansion such as the $130 million one with Crown.