This story first appeared within the Nov. 15 print version of GSA Enterprise Report.
If Greer Station is the compass rose of town’s redevelopment plan, Undertaking Homecoming could be its needle.
The place the $42 million, 275-family deliberate neighborhood factors, returned funding within the metropolis would observe, Reno Deaton, president and CEO of the Greer Redevelopment Corp., told GSA Business Report on the conclusion of the primary section of Greer’s streetscape mission final 12 months.
However the metropolis’s plans could also be in troubled straits after Greenville County Council’s finance committee shot down a fee-in-lieu-of-tax settlement for the mission in October — a choice that has sparked council debate on what kind of tasks qualify for financial improvement incentives.
“Town of Greer had labored with the developer to clear up some blight — a metropolis block within the metropolis of Greer,” County Councilman Dan Tripp stated. “We went by way of the method and the chairman pulled the ordinance again to committee, modified the committee assignments up and put two folks on there who helped him kill the FILOT settlement. I simply assume it sends a foul sign to our municipalities and builders that we’re not supportive.”
County Council Chairman Willis Meadows changed councilmembers Joe Dill and Butch Kirven with Ennis Fant and Stan Tzouvelekas on the finance committee earlier this 12 months.
Tripp, chairman of the finance committee, admitted the brand new committee had eradicated solely the one FILOT settlement, however was afraid that’s sufficient of a warning flare for incoming builders to set off a “chilling impact” on improvement within the county.
“It’s unlucky that somebody got here to me at present and stated, ‘I hear they’re going to maneuver the Freeway 14 matter again to the kill committee,’” Tripp stated through the assembly. Earlier through the assembly, Meadows had agreed with a movement to maneuver a $121 million mission to alleviate congestion on Woodruff Highway again to committee.
“To repeat that does a disservice to the council,” Meadows stated.
Tripp replied that he simply needed to problem the council to not play to the “kill committee” caricature.
“We’re speaking about rising by 40% over the subsequent 20 years, and we can not deal with the congestion on Woodruff Highway if we don’t do that mission,” he stated.
After the assembly, Meadows advised GSA Enterprise Report that the council has to play inside sure parameters, and people don’t enable FILOT agreements for residential communities — even when they’re blended improvement tasks like Undertaking Homecoming.
“We’re criticized because the kill committee as a result of we observe the principles,” he stated. “FILOTs are used for manufacturing and industrial, not for housing. So, we observe that rule. Now, I’m sorry to say we haven’t at all times performed that.”
Three residential FILOT agreements, two pertaining to reasonably priced housing tasks, had been permitted by the council up to now, he stated.
“That is a part of the issue with council: we don’t at all times observe the principles,” Meadows advised GSA Enterprise Report. “That’s why we obtained sued. That’s why we owed $30 million, and we’re not giving that again — which we should always. And now, we’re being sued for $330 million as a result of we didn’t give it again.”
Greer resident Jerry Bruce sued Greenville County on Oct. 20 for not repaying taxpayers for $30 million in highway and telecommunication charges dominated by the S.C. Supreme Court docket to be unconstitutional and unlawful in July. Piggy-backing on council discussions of the swimsuit, Tzouvelekas famous in session that on the subsequent assembly, he would carry ahead a plan to get rid of property taxes for Greenville residents.
However so far as altering FILOT guidelines to permit for extra residential improvement, Meadows stated it’s attainable however that it might solely improve residential builders’ income, not usher in jobs or increase salaries.
“All guidelines may be modified,” he stated. “However I might hope not.”
Attain Molly Hulsey at 864-720-1223.