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Tax Increment Financing

This page is provided to give those interested in understanding the world of Tax Increment Financing a little more information. Besides the overview and local information below, we invite users to check out the list of external links exploring this issue.

A General Overview

The Colorado General Assembly has authorized the use of a form of financing known as "tax increment financing" by urban renewal authorities (URA) and downtown development authorities (DDA) in the State of Colorado.

Tax increment financing (TIF) provides a method whereby certain types of public improvements intended to promote urban redevelopment may be financed through the issuance of tax exempt revenue bonds. It involves the creation of a special fund comprised of increases in ad valorem property taxes or municipal sales taxes, or both such taxes, generated within the tax increment financing area. The increases in such taxes presumably occur as a result of the expenditure of bond proceeds. The increases in tax proceeds are then pledged to pay debt service on the bonds.

A URA plan may contain a provision that property taxes levied upon taxable property in the urban renewal area (TIF area) after the effective date of the plan may be split between the authority and local taxing entities for a period that cannot exceed 25 years. A DDA plan may contain a provision that property taxes levied upon taxable property in the downtown development area (TIF area) after the effective date of the plan may be split between the authority and local taxing entities for a period that cannot exceed 30 years, except when a 20-year extension is enacted pursuant to 31-25-807(3)(a)(IV), C.R.S.

The division of property tax is made according to the "base" valuation of the area and any "increment" valuation that may have occurred in the area. The base valuation of the tax increment area begins as the total assessed valuation of all taxable property last certified by the assessor prior to the effective date of the approval of the urban renewal or downtown development tax increment financing plan. All property taxes attributable to the base valuation are paid to each taxing entity (school district, county, city, etc.) within the area according to the mill levy rates fixed each year by or for each such political body.

The "increment" valuation of the tax increment financing area is the amount of assessed valuation, if any, which exceeds the base valuation. All property taxes attributable to the "increment" valuation are paid into the special fund of the URA or DDA to pay debt service on the bonds and other indebtedness.

A Sampling of Colorado URAs

Aurora Avon Brighton
Broomfield Denver (Renew Denver) Firestone
Fort Collins (Downtown) Fort Collins (Renew Fort Collins) Greeley
Lafayette Lakewood Loveland
Northglenn Parker Pueblo

Tax Increment Financing Areas:

Original Value 2015 Value
Fort Collins DDA (Created in 1981)
    Base 15,803,010 88,764,675
    Increment 0 79,105,243
    Total Assessed Value 15,803,010 167,869,918
Loveland Downtown URA (Created in 2002)
    Base 22,397,280 29,946,689
    Increment 0 157,302
    Total Assessed Value 22,397,280 30,103,991
US34/Crossroads Corridor URA (Created in 2004)
    Base 369,700 1,257,992
    Increment 0 106,029,570
    Total Assessed Value 369,700 107,287,562
North College Avenue URA (Created in 2004)
    Base 19,347,870 21,991,021
    Increment 0 16,270,009
    Total Assessed Value 19,347,870 38,261,030
Timnath URA (Created in 2004)
    Base 2,034,500 2,335,444
    Increment 0 52,168,471
    Total Assessed Value 2,034,500 54,503,915
Block 41 Finley's Addition URA (Created in 2005)
    Base 192,000 214,269
    Increment 0 4,094,901
    Total Assessed Value 192,000 4,309,170
Midtown URA Prospect South (Created in 2011)
    Base 8,555,900 8,940,341
    Increment 0 4,920,326
    Total Assessed Value 8,555,900 13,860,667
Midtown URA Foothills Mall (Created in 2013)
    Base 14,309,560 14,590,511
    Increment 0 -879,187
    Total Assessed Value 14,309,560 13,711,324

URA / DDA Contact Information (within Larimer County):

Timnath Development Authority (created in 2004):
4800 Goodman Road
Timnath, CO 80547
Phone: (970) 224-3211
Web: http://www.timnathco.govoffice2.com
City Council members act as the ex-officio Authority commission

Loveland Urban Renewal Authority (created in 2002):
500 East Third Street, Suite 210
Loveland, CO 80537
Phone: (970) 962-2525
Web: http://www.ci.loveland.co.us/index.aspx?page=111
City Council members act as the ex-officio Authority commission

Fort Collins Urban Renewal Authority (created in 1982):
300 Laporte Ave.
Fort Collins, CO 80521
Phone: (970) 416-2231
Fax: (970) 224-6107
Web: http://renewfortcollins.com
City Council members act as the ex-officio Authority commission

Fort Collins Downtown Development Authority (created in 1981):
19 Old Town Square, Suite 230
Fort Collins, CO 80524
Phone: (970) 484-2020
Fax: (970) 484-2069

The Downtown Development Authority is appointed by the City Council and serves as the primary planning and development advisor for downtown Fort Collins. The Authority is quasi-autonomous, has certain powers and duties granted to it by Colorado Statute, has authority to levy a property tax up to 5 mills for its operations and has the ability to issue tax increment bonds to provide public services within its boundaries. Web: http://www.downtownfortcollins.org/

Additional Information and Related Presentations

The following links are offered for those who wish to learn more about the nature of TIF, where TIF has worked and where it hasn't, and what some feel the proper role of TIF is in the arena of public/private partnerships and financing arrangements. The list contains fairly new links and some links that have been around for years.

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