Walmart seeks property tax relief for redevelopment of former K-Mart store in Homewood

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Walmart seeks property tax relief for redevelopment of former K-Mart store in Homewood

August 23, 2015 - 15:21
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Walmart has leased the former K-Mart store on Halsted 
Street and is asking the village to support a Class 8 
property tax designation to help with redevelopment 

costs. (Photo by Eric Crump/HF Chronicle)

Walmart is asking the village of Homewood to support its application for Class 8 property tax reductions from Cook County to help with the redevelopment of the former K-Mart store on Halsted Street, which has been vacant since late 2013.

Homewood trustees will consider a resolution supporting the Class 8 designation at the Tuesday board meeting. 

Normally, a Class 8 designation reduces the property's assessment from 25 percent of market value to 10 percent for 10 years, then 15 percent of market value in the 11th year, 20 percent in the 12th year and back to 25 percent thereafter.
 
According to an agreement with the village, Walmart's property tax relief would be capped at $4.3 million. The Class 8 designation would be terminated if the $4.3 million in tax savings is reached before the usual 12-year period of the designation is reached.

Improvements to the future Walmart building are expected to cost about $25 million, according to village officials. 

If the Class 8 designation is approved and the project moves forward, the store could open in the summer of 2016, according to a memo from Village Manager Jim Marino.

In other business, a Metra representative is expected to attend the meeting to brief the board and the community on maintenance projects in the commuter railway's portion of Homewood train station.

Village and Metra officials met at the station Friday, Aug. 14, to identify repairs needed in the tunnel, elevators, stairway and Metra platform area. Metra provided the village with a list of 25 repair items last week, and work has begun on several items.

Trustees will also consider joining the South Suburban Land Bank and Development Authority.

SSLBDA is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization that can acquire vacant properties, resolve tax issues and help redevelop properties to make them productive again, according to village officials. There is no cost to the village to join the organization.

There are currently 16 municipalities in the organization, including Hazel Crest, Chicago Heights, Park Forest and Olympia Fields.

Also on the agenda:

  • approve the move from quarterly to monthly water service billing, as discussed at the board's Aug. 11 meeting
  • the reappointment of Shannon Olison to the Community Relations Commission
  • change the date of the second September board meeting from Sept. 22 to Sept. 21
  • consider a variance request from the property owner at 2504 Lawrence Lane to locate a shed in the east yard of the property.

The Homewood Board of Trustees meet at 7:30 p.m. in the lower level of Village Hall, 2020 Chestnut Road.