Trustees Jim Hrejsa (from left), Jeff White, and Mitchell Milenkovic, after being sworn in by Mayor Jeff Walik. (Supplied photo)

Trustees Jim Hrejsa (from left), Jeff White, and Mitchell Milenkovic, after being sworn in by Mayor Jeff Walik. (Supplied photo)

Stickney mulls creating TIF district 

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Stickney Village Officials at their board meeting on May 2 at St. Pius Church. (Photo by Carol McGowan)

By Carol McGowan 

The Village of Stickney is contemplating creating what it is calling the Pershing and Harlem TIF District.

Because of a larger than usual meeting crowd expected, the hearing and subsequent village board meeting were moved to the basement of St. Pius Church.

Officials explained that a TIF district is a flexible financing tool for municipalities to promote redevelopment. Once created, the value of properties in the area is established as a base amount and the taxes on that base amount continue to be paid to the taxing bodies for the duration of the TIF district. Any growth in the value of property above the base amount goes into a special fund that is used by the municipality to pay for improvements within the TIF district.

Creation of a TIF district doesn’t mean that development or redevelopment will occur.  Market factors will be the principal factor driving any development or redevelopment.

Under state law, the village could promote commercial, residential, industrial, or mixed-use redevelopment.  The village’s TIF Redevelopment Plan will call for generally modernizing the area, while maintaining the traditional commercial and residential orientation along both the village’s portions of the Harlem Avenue and Pershing Road corridors.

The proposed TIF area has to meet certain criteria to qualify.

For example, 50% of the structures inside the district must be 35 years old or older, and at least 13 factors have to apply. Almost 90 percent of the structures (88 of 99) in the proposed district are over 35 years old.

Stickney said a variety of public infrastructure improvements are needed and the TIF would make potential redevelopment more desirable.

Village officials said homeowners would benefit from generally stabilized or improved property values, which can create a “spill over” benefit for adjacent neighborhoods, water, sewer, and street improvements can be paid for through sources other than general property taxes, and increased business activity can mean that fewer homeowner property taxes are required to provide for essential services, such as police, fire, and public safety.

The Village Board may take action on the TIF district at its next meeting on May 16.

In the board meeting that followed, the three trustees who ran unopposed in the April election were sworn in by Mayor Jeff Walik.

Trustee Jim Hrejsa was voted in to his first full four-year term, and Trustees Mitchell Milenkovic and Jeff White were also sworn in for another four years.

A request to hire one probationary police officer was approved, along with an ordinance regarding temporary signs.  This ordinance would put a number on the number of signs for special events that can be put on public property.

Walik read a proclamation recognizing the 54th annual Professional Municipal Clerks Week and thanking Clerk Audrey McAdams for her work.  He also read a proclamation declaring Arbor Day in the village and noted that local school children did a skit at the two schools in the village and planted a tree at each the Friday before.

Even though the weather didn’t cooperate, approximately 350 attended the Cinco De Mayo Celebration, and a good time was had by all.

The next board meeting will take place at Village Hall on May 16.  At that meeting, the new canine for the police department will be introduced.  Hans is a Belgian Malinois who recently went through training.  Hans was paid for through a grant from the U.S. Bureau of Justice Assistance.

 

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