DAYTON, Ind. (WLFI)- A TIF district in Dayton is on its way to becoming smaller. On Monday, the Tippecanoe County Commissioners voted to move their portion of a TIF they had with Dayton to an existing TIF in the southeast part of the county. According to the county, the Yost Drive TIF development has been a need in the community of Dayton for years.
"This road has been both in our long-range transportation plan and the joint Dayton land use plan for over 30 years," said Sallie Fahey the Executive Director for the Area Plan Commission Tippecanoe County
The TIF would have extended Yost Drive from State Road 38 north to Haggerty Lane. While the project was on its way to becoming a reality a vote that came from the Dayton town board has changed all that. The Dayton town board voted to table the project for two years.
Eighty percent of the project would have been funded through federal aid and the other twenty percent would have been funded by the town of Dayton. Now that the town of Dayton has voted to table the project for two years, the county has decided to move their portion of the Yost Drive TIF district into a different district.
Since the project is on hold, the TIF is not generating any revenue, so the county says it did not make sense for them to continue to keep their portion of the TIF there. However, the surveying work for this project has already been completed, and since the town pulled out, they will have to pay for all of the surveying work that has been done.
"Because the town of Dayton has pulled out of the project the town of Dayton will have to reimburse the feds the 80 percent they paid for the surveying,” said Tippecanoe County Commissioner Tom Murtaugh. “So, the town will have to pay 100 percent of the surveying work that has already been completed."
According to Murtaugh, the town of Dayton will now owe 40,628 dollars to the federal government, and originally they would have only had to pay twenty percent of that.
"I think this will have a long-reaching impact for generations it was a very poor decision on the town board’s part and I feel bad it happened for the citizens of Dayton," said Ashley Stevenson a Dayton Town Board Member.
Stevenson is the only member of the Dayton Town Board who voted to move forward with the project. Town Board President Ron Koehler says even though their decision is costing taxpayer’s money now the rest of the board feels in the end they will save taxpayer dollars.
"I think we are going to save a lot of money in the long run and not lose money and we will make that money up by not completing a project that we don't even know what all our costs are and how much of a return it will be," said Koehler.
However, county officials say this decision could cost Dayton more money if the project never happens.
"There is the potential that if the project is never built that even the federal money that would have gone to construction might have to be paid back,” said Fahey. “That's an issue that will have to be crossed down the road."
Commissioner Murtaugh says Dayton's decision to table the project is costing the county too. The 300,000 dollars they had dedicated to that project can now no longer be used in 2020.