North Douglas County redevelopment decision delayed
December 8, 2006
Douglas County commissioners postponed making a decision about a $24.7 million redevelopment deal near its border with Carson City until Dec. 21.
Under the proposal, Riverwood Development LLC would create 30,000 square feet of commercial space on a site located on Highway 395 across from the Wal-Mart Supercenter at Topsy Lane.
Officials in Douglas expect the work needed to complete the initial project will result in development of the rest of the center and significantly add to the county’s coffers.
If this deal is approved, construction on the site is expected to begin next summer. And if full development of the property occurs, the county could gradually earn $90 million for operations, future redevelopment and emergency services through 2027, according to officials there.
Douglas is one of nine Nevada counties that receive guaranteed-minimum sales tax revenue. It is one component of the state’s sales tax formula for distribution of proceeds. Smaller, rural counties with limited resources are ensured adequate funds to provide their residents services through this arrangement, according to the state Department of Taxation.
Revenues are reviewed annually by the state to determine whether each of the participants are still eligible for it. Counties in this category with “slow, sustainable growth” can eventually be removed once they earn revenue 10 percent above the guaranteed minimum of the previous year.
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Nye County, for example, no longer receives this type of sales tax share because of economic growth in Pahrump. And Douglas could be removed at some point for the same reason. Last year, its revenue was roughly 4.25 above its guaranteed minimum, said Marian Henderson, a management analyst for the department.
However, “this isn’t necessarily a bad thing,” Henderson said.
Not receiving the funding allows non-guaranteed counties access to other revenue sources, such as a share of out-of-state sales taxes. And, of course, when the county is faring well financially they receive all of their share of sales tax revenue generated locally, she emphasized.
Carson City isn’t among the counties that receive guaranteed sales tax shares, but among those that provide some of the funds distributed to the guarantee counties. It depends on its own sales tax revenues to fund operations.
Though it’s only one component of each county’s revenue picture, “those fluctuations can have a big effect” on making ends meet and could translate into a seven-figure dollar amount, said Carson City Manager Linda Ritter.
This Douglas redevelopment offer focuses on commercializing a nearly five-acre site owned by Michael Hohl and Dink Cryer, Carson City auto dealers. An $11-million offer by the county’s redevelopment agency to improve the same property was rejected in 2005.
• Contact reporter Terri Harber at firstname.lastname@example.org or 882-2111, ext. 215.