Homewood explores TIF incentive for Bogart’s site redevelopment

Officials hope a new TIF district will incentivize redevelopment of the former Bogart’s restaurant at 18225 Dixie Highway in Homewood. 
Kane, McKenna and Associates, a financial services firm, began helping the village work toward establishing a new TIF district along Dixie Highway and Miller Court in August of 2018. The goal was to help spur redevelopment of the former Bogart’s building. The restaurant closed in 2012 and the property has been vacant since.
The village has been working with a potential developer but analysis by Kane, McKenna and Associates shows the project isn’t financially feasible without some incentive. 
“This site is a small infill redevelopment, which can be challenging to finance. Building costs can be higher for construction of smaller projects,” Homewood Director of Economic and Community Development Angela Mesaros said in village documents. 
TIF stands for tax increment financing. Any property taxes drawn from within a TIF district above a certain threshold are used for projects and to subsidize incentive programs for businesses within the designated area. In Homewood, TIF funds are used for things like the facade and property improvement program aimed at helping businesses upgrade the appearance of their properties. 
TIF districts are one way towns can attract business by offsetting some of the higher taxes in Cook County as compared to the collar counties and Indiana.
The village board approved an ordinance designating the area a TIF district at its May 28 meeting. But Homewood is required to convene a joint review board meeting and hold a public hearing. 
The review board will meet for the first time at 2 p.m. on June 17. A public hearing will be held before the village board’s meeting at 7 p.m. on July 23. 
In other business, the village board accepted a $24,080 bid from Standard and Associates for an entry-level police officer hiring test and a fire lieutenant promotional process evaluation this summer and fall. The village has worked with Stanard and Associates since 2008. 
Homewood will put out a formal request for proposals later this year for further police and fire testing services.

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