Under Construction (Belleville Telescope)

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Viewpoint – Deb Hadachek
Belleville Telescope Editor

Luke Mahin reminded me last week about an aspect of the Neighborhood Revitalization Program that I had forgotten.

The NRP—which rebates property taxes on qualifying new construction on a sliding scale for five years— is an investment in our future tax base, Mahin notes.

In the past year, the NRP has 42 active applications, totaling $3.8 million in construction. Some 72 applications have qualified over the last five years of the program.

If that $3.8 million is assessed at 30 percent for tax purposes, it eventually adds another $1.14 million to the tax base.

The NRP doesn’t give away any tax dollars governments currently collect. It only delays for a few years the time that new construction of at least $30,000 in value will come on the tax rolls.

And its the one program the county has that is available to everyone who builds—whether it is a private homeowner, a business, or a farmer who wants to put up more grain storage.

As Mahin points out, it’s hard to tell how much construction would happen anyway without the NRP. In the case of a small business or home owner, it may encourage them to build sooner or bigger than they might otherwise. Especially for a new business, it allows a little extra capital or cash flow in the early years as they get established.

Republic County took a big jump in property valuations this year, almost entirely due to the increases in ag land values. But many experts believe those values have hit their peak.

When the lion’s share of the county’s property value is tied to ag land, so is the future funding of schools, roads, hospital and other government services.

An increase in construction in the county helps stabilize the tax base, whether it’s a new house or home addition, machine shed, or business expansion. That investment also makes the property more valuable for the owner.

Mahin notes that some large businesses chose to build and pay taxes immediately without making application to the NRP, and that is a laudable decision. But support for programs like the NRP, revolving loan fund and others mark Republic County as a place interested in growth.

Click to view the Neighborhood Revitalization Program guidelines and application.
Please call Luke Mahin 785-374-3047 for more information on this program for a future project.