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Salt Lake County Regional Development News

Salt Lake County TIF Policy Evaluated for Improvements by Outside Agency in New Report


May 26, 2021

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A new report and evaluation of Salt Lake County Tax Increment Financing (TIF) policy, conducted by third-party experts SB Friedman Developer Advisors, was presented to Salt Lake County Council on Tuesday, May 25, 2021.

The full report evaluated Salt Lake County's current TIF policies and practices by researching how TIF is currently used as an economic development tool in Utah; how Utah's implementation of TIF compares elsewhere in the nation; and comparing case studies. Additionally, SB Friedman interviewed local municipalities for applicable feedback, issues, and reviewed 10 TIF project proposals for analysis.

TIF is a tool used for economic development by municipalities to stimulate private development for the betterment of the community in certain project areas that, but for the use of tax increment dollars, redevelopment would otherwise prove unlikely or difficult. The redevelopment agency can then use the tax increment dollars it collects from the project area to incentivize development for a specified amount of time.

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Following this research, several recommendations were made to Salt Lake County to improve the TIF process, including:

  • Clarify the TIF process with clear timelines, requirements, eligible project types, and a set of expectations.
  • Build capacity: Develop templates, conduct trainings and partner with others for trainings.
  • Collaborate with taxing entities and municipalities: Salt Lake County should convene major taxing bodies to establish common requirements in analyses and build partnerships with municipalities. 

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The full detail of recommended changes made to Salt Lake County is available in the report. 

As part of the ongoing process of improving Salt Lake County's TIF policy and becoming a better partner, a new webpage launched at slco.org/economic-development/TIF, where the TIF Area Project Database, future templates, and more detailed project application criteria can be found.

Following the presentation of this report, Salt Lake County Economic Development will continue to coordinate with Salt Lake County Council on next steps and future implementation of recommendations.


You Drive? Then You Should Know These 5 Tips to be a Better Bike Ally in Salt Lake County


May 19, 2021

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We've all likely heard the refrain at some point in our adult lives ... "Utah drivers are the worst."

While you and I might not technically be ranked the worst in the nation, there are some simple things we can learn to be better allies to neighbors who are biking on Salt Lake County roads.

So, participate in National Bike Month, even if you stick to four wheels, by checking out these five tips.

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1. "Don't (Drive) Too Close to Me"

Keep 3 feet of distance between your vehicle and bicyclists. What does that look like? When you pass, you should be able to fit the width of a table ... or Danny DeVito ... or 30 Bibles between your vehicle and the bicyclist. The 3-feet rule is actually in Utah state code (the Danny DeVito part isn't).

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2. Cool Your Wheels

While you're in your vehicle next to a bicyclist, now is not the time to pick up Jazz hands, honk, or harass the other party.

Distracting them on purpose can cause serious injury, and it's against the law in Utah.

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3. Checking twice is nice

Look twice before turning left or right. This might be normal practice already; but chances are, you're usually just looking for other vehicles ... and not approaching bicyclists, which can be harder to see.

 

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4. Door's Wide Open

As motorists, we might not think about it being a big deal to open our car door and get out when parked on a street. (After all, the hard part of parallel parking is over.) But, quickly opening your door can be a danger to a potential cyclist passing by, causing them to swerve from their path.

No one wants to closeline their neighbor, so just do a quick mirror check, yeah?

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5. A Fair Brake

We share the road, and both have equal rights to it. Cars and trucks might be bigger, but bicyclists have just as much right to be there. This means drivers have to be courteous and careful while we're behind the wheel.

Plus, more and more Utahns are choosing to ride bikes for transportation and for fun since the pandemic, which means there are more cyclists on the road. 

Learn more about Salt Lake County Bicycle Advisory Committee (SLCBAC) and the work these local volunteers do to make the county more bicycle-friendly!


4 Things You Didn't Know About Salt Lake County Economic Development


May 12, 2021

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It's Economic Development Week, so to mark the occasion, we're sharing four facts you might not have known about Salt Lake County Economic Development.

A regional approach to economic development means working cooperatively to meet needs and ensure the economic well-being of all the county's residents.

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1. Economic Development staff work to support economic growth in the Municipal Services District (MSD)

The Municipal Services District serves the metro townships of Copperton, Emigration Canyon, Kearns, Magna, White City, and the unincorporated communities.

One example of how Salt Lake County pushes and prioritizes growth in these communities can be seen in the events of 2020. Salt Lake County opened the Small Business Impact Grant (SBIG) to disperse millions in CARES Act COVID-19 relief to small businesses. Salt Lake County Economic Development personally called more than 200 local businesses in MSD communities to encourage them to apply. Ultimately, 45 businesses in the MSD were approved for SBIG grants totalling more than $630,000.

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2. Economic Development facilitates the cleanup of contaminated land through EPA grants and loan funds

Economic Development works with partners to identify, assess, and facilitate environmental cleanup of polluted properties, from old gas stations and dry cleaners to auto shops and former manufacturing sites. 

In May 2021, the County was awarded an additional $600,000 from the EPA to assess contaminated properties. We look forward to helping property owners better understand potential contamination so that these sites can be cleaned up, leading to better health, community, and economic outcomes.

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3. Economic Development leads the Council on Diversity Affairs Economic Opportunity Subcommittee

The Mayor's Council on Diversity Affairs (CODA) is a critical group composed of county employees and community volunteers and experts working to identify systemic failures, provide policy recommendations, and focus on measurable actions toward addressing equity, access, institutional reform and racial justice in Salt Lake County.

The Economic Opportunity Subcommittee works closely with minority chambers of commerce and organizations in Salt Lake County to identify and address the obstacles that prevent minority-owned small businesses from accessing and obtaining economic resources.

4. Economic Development plays a role in regional redevelopment

Salt Lake County is home to 17 municipalities and the MSD. Each municipality controls its own redevelopment agency, allowing the municipality to identify local constituent and community needs. The County partners with redevelopment agencies through tax increment financing (TIF) to rejuvenate blighted areas, stimulate private development, strengthen the city’s financial tax base, improve public infrastructure, and create new jobs.

Want to see where those TIF project areas are? Visit our Tax Incremental Finance Project Areas Dashboard.