Scottsbluff areas receive designation to seek tax increment financing

Areas designated in blue will receive blighted or substandard designation

By a narrow margin, the Scottsbluff City Council Monday evening passed a resolution approving a "blighted or substandard" designation for portions of the city that will make those areas eligible for tax increment financing.

Areas that will be part of the designation include a section adjacent to Highway 26 that includes the Monument Mall and K-Mart properties. It also includes a large section of agricultural land north of Staples and east of Nationstar Mortgage. And a section of land west of the residence halls at WNCC and adjacent to Highway 26, which is property Tim Reganis and Dave Schaff are hoping to use for the development of a hotel. That proposed development is what precipitated the study that led to designation in order to secure tax increment financing.

Gothenberg attorney Mike Bacon presented the proposal to have these areas declared blighted or substandard so that they will be eligible for tax increment financing, making revitalization of those areas possible for further or future development. Bacon cited the decline of traffic at Monument Mall since the departure of Walmart at that location, stating that tax increment financing could be a tool for others to develop property in that area and revitalize that whole section of the city. Bacon noted several instances where such a designation has helped the community of Gothenberg prosper with new development projects.

The resolution passed with three votes after Councilman Scott Shaver voted no while Councilman Raymond Gonzales abstained from voting until he received further information.

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