Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear has signed HB 310 into law, amending and expanding the state’s Tax Increment Financing (TIF) program. HB 310 extends the window of time Signature TIF projects that received approval prior to Jan. 1, 2008, 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 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.
Using tax increment financing as an economic development tool enables the University of Kentucky to build new laboratory and incubator space at its Coldstream Research Campus, which houses spinoff companies created by UK faculty.
The TIF program, which was transferred to the Cabinet for Economic Development in 2008, allows qualified public projects to use future gains in state and local tax revenues to finance the current improvements that will create those gains. All projects are presented as a recommendation to the Kentucky Economic Development Finance Authority for approval. To date, 17 projects, including nine Signature TIFs, have received approval through the program.
Previously approved Signature TIFs that are eligible to benefit from the extension of activation provided by HB 310 include Ovation in Newport, as well as Center City, Nucleus and Museum Plaza in Louisville.