News and Commentary

Impact of CRA Exemption on Local Community

todayNovember 11, 2021 6


WILMINGTON, OH – The slogan Live Local wasn’t coined without purpose. More often than not – the upfront cost of purchasing from a community or small business versus a big box entity may be higher; however what is the long-term cost-benefit analysis?

Recently an outside entity of Mason applied for a Community Reinvestment Exemption (CRA) in Clinton County; legislature written so that the property owner does not owe taxes for the initial 5-15 years of purchase. Approving this legislation would give this particular developer a leg up on the competition – by way of offering new homes for purchase in Wilmington; property tax-free.

Even with the economic fluctuations induced by the pandemic – the housing market nationwide has seen exponential growth. Home sales in the local area have been facing no present issues either.

Personal property taxes are a primary source of funding for our local schools and services; such as transportation – commonly used by seniors. While these projects are highly beneficial to the community if the exemption were granted – a decrease of potential taxpayers would only increase the financial weight for current owners.

City Council voted to table the requested CRA exemption during the second reading of the motion in October as announced in The Wilmington News Journal; with an upcoming election in sight, that included levies for both schools and senior funding on the ballot.

The November election resulted with the elderly services levy passing and school levy failing – per this cycle.

While there ultimately has not been a “perfect” solution for property development or taxation, there are other methods to consider utilizing.

Another widely used tool  is a Tax Increment Financing (TIF). It reduces risk when multiple developers are in play and allows for diverting taxes towards infrastructure and payments can be made to schools in lieu of taxes to offset fixed costs.

Written by: wzaalpfm

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