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By LeAnn R. Ralph
COLFAX — Members of the Colfax Village Board have decided they do not quite yet have enough information to form a fifth Tax Increment Finance District.
Creating TID 5 would be necessary to pay for the additional work on Dunn Street to install sewer and water so that Phase 2 of the East View residential development could move forward, said Lynn Niggemann, village administrator-clerk-treasurer, at the Colfax Village Board’s June 14 meeting.
Andrew De Moe of Andy’s Custom Concrete has expressed interest in building a triplex in Phase 2 of the East View development.
Ayres Associates could do the survey work and prepare the bid documents, but the concern is the extra cost of construction, Niggemann said.
A contract is already in place to complete work on the first part of Dunn Street this summer.
If a “rush” is put on TID 5, the earliest it could be created would be July or August, Niggemann said.
The village board should move forward with creating TID 5, but more committee meetings are needed to make decisions and to make sure that it is done right, she said.
Because the street contractors are all under contract right now and are busy this summer, the cost of the additional project on Dunn Street would be more than if the project was advertised for bids during the winter, said Gareth Shambeau of Ayres Associates.
There is also a matter of lead time on materials and supplies. The lead time on fire hydrants is two and a half months, he said.
The project could be bid out, but then there would be a delay on starting the project to wait for materials to arrive, Shambeau said.
“This is not the right time to try to rush,” he said.
Ayres can do the survey work and design the project, and then later this fall or during the winter, the project can be bid out and construction could take place next spring, Shambeau said.
“It’s a lot of rushing,” he said, noting that the creation of TID 5 also would be important in terms of paying for Ayres’ services through the TID.
If Ayres’ fees are going to come out of the TID, “we have to have the TID,” Niggemann said.
“We need our ducks in a row,” said Gary Stene, village trustee.
The estimate is that because the project would be squeezed in among other projects, it would cost 5 percent more, but 5 percent might not even cover it, he said.
The village may be better off to move slower, Stene said.
TID 5 would have to be a mixed use TID in order to include residential. Mixed use TIDs can have 35 percent residential, but then the remainder of the district must be commercial or industrial.
One question Stene had is whether existing businesses could be included in TID 5 to account for the commercial portion.
“Ehlers needs to answer questions,” he said.
Ehlers Associates is the village’s financial consultant and planner.
Stene said part of his question is whether Adams Auto Repair and Dollar General could be included in TID 5 or whether the TID’s commercial component would have to be all new businesses.
Under state law, residential lots in a mixed use TID cannot be any larger than one-third of an acre, Niggemann said.
Mark Halpin, village trustee, agreed it would be in the village’s best interests to slow down.
“The second part of Dunn Street probably cannot happen this year,” Niggemann said.
“If we can’t get a bid or a contractor, what good would it do?” she asked.
Several village board members wondered if Ayres should start on the survey work now.
There is no need to push any of the work if the design is not going to take place until after the TID is formed, Shambeau said.
Members of the Colfax Village Board agreed Niggemann would have to gather more information and that more meetings would be required before another TID could be formed.
In a Tax Increment Finance District, the property taxes on new construction are not paid out to the village, the county, the school district or Chippewa Valley Technical College, but instead, the money is placed in a special fund to pay for improvements within the TID, such as street projects.
When the TID is closed out in about 25 years, the taxing authorities receive their portion of the money that remains.