ESI Senior Vice President and Principal, Lee Huang, was quoted in the Plan Philly article, TIF districts generate less property tax revenue than expected.
Lee Huang, of Econsult, pointed out that TIF projects tend to be very big, and very big projects in turn tend to be undertaken by big-name developers. The important thing, he said, is that the process for creating the subsidies is public.
“Do you have some analytical process and some public response process to make sure these subsidies are not handed out in a smoky-room, handshake-transaction sort of way?” he said.
The W Hotel is the first proposed TIF district during Mayor Michael Nutter’s administration. The bill was approved unanimously by Council’s finance committee last week, after a series of behind-the-scenes negotiations, though at least one Council member—Wilson Goode—is opposed to it. The bill could come up for a vote before the full Council in early December. If approved, the TIF will begin January 1st, 2014.