Delay on redevelopment funds makes sense
June 11, 2007
The Board of Supervisors made a smart decision in postponing a decision on whether to provide Dick Campagni with an additional $500,000 in redevelopment funds to build his new auto dealership.
There are just too many questions that must be answered before making such a decision, including what the city has to gain from such an investment.
In the end, it’s possible that the investment could pay off for the city if it means getting the dealership built earlier and, consequently, producing sales tax revenue sooner. The construction of the business is apparently being delayed while Campagni works on new plans and financing to satisfy Toyota, and those changes have added about $1 million to the pricetag.
On the other hand, it’s possible the city would reap no additional benefits. Supervisors simply need more information to make that decision.
What they do know is the $500,000 would come from taxes on the building that would be built on what is now a dirt lot. The dealer would pay back the city over seven years through new property taxes on the business.
The downside of giving the money to Campagni is that the redevelopment funds could instead be used on another project within the district.
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The inescapable bedrock fact beneath all of this is that Carson City needs the auto dealers, including Dick Campagni. They provide about a third of the sales tax revenue for a city that needs every dollar it can find. No, it’s not a good thing to be so dependent on any one sector, and diversifying is something that must continue to be among the highest priorities of city planners.
For now, supervisors are bound to do what’s best for the city economically, and in this case it’s possible that will mean doing what’s best for the auto dealer.