MORRIS – We Care of Grundy County on Tuesday received a $50,000 tax increment finance grant from the City of Morris after council members voted 6-0, with Aldermen Julian Houston and Randy Larson absent, to approve it.
The funds have to be used for TIF eligible capital improvements to We Care’s new facility at 530 Bedford Road, Morris Mayor Richard Kopczick said.
“We have provided TIF grants for other not-for-profit projects in the TIF districts,” Kopczick said before the meeting. “It’s important to help, especially those who do a lot of good for the community.”
A TIF district is an area in which assessed property values are frozen at their current level. The difference in tax revenue generated between the frozen tax value and present-day value goes into a special TIF fund to be used for improvements to properties within the district.
We Care Executive Director Eric Fisher said the money will be used on the building for repairs and additions to the currently used space of the 18,000 square-foot building.
“We want the money that comes in from donations to go to the programming, not the building,” Fisher said. “This grant will help us as we continue to expand our programs.”
Fisher said the programs are evolving due to the extra space the new building provides.
He said the facility is able to provide a space for Salvation Army disaster training, and it was able to store supplies during the Coal City tornado, a feat not possible in the organization’s previous office, which was just 3,500 square feet.
Alderman Bill Martin said during the meeting that the money for the grant to We Care was included in this year’s budget.
The council also approved, in a 6-0 vote, the annual release of surplus TIF 1 funds from the 2014 tax year payable in 2015, to the Grundy County treasurer to be disbursed to taxing districts in the amount of $403,685.38; as well as a disbursement of 40 percent, or $1.6 million, to be distributed among Saratoga School District 60C, Morris Elementary District 54 and Morris Community High School District 101, per the intergovernmental agreement in place.
Morris Marina TIF District surplus was also approved to be released for tax year 2014 payable in 2015 in the amount of $491.25.