Senate Committee Unanimously approves Monroe’s Request for Extension of TIF District Tax Benefits for I-20 and Tower-Armand

Tuesday, April 16, 2019 - 3:15pm

Measure will now have to go before Senate and House for a Vote

In Baton Rouge, yesterday, the Senate Committee on Revenue and Fiscal Affairs unanimously
approved the City of Monroe’s request for Senate Bill 33 to move out of committee and be
voted on by the Senate and House. Senator Francis Thompson and State Representative
Katrina Jackson joined Mayor Jamie Mayo, Director of Administration Stacey Rowell, and City
Engineer Kim Golden to speak in favor of the measure to extend the Tax Increment Financing
district for our I-20 and Tower-Armand Economic Development Districts until the year 2033.

Mayor Mayo and City Officials go before State Committee to Gain
Support for Extension of I-20 and Tower-Armand Economic
Development District Tax Benefits

Mayor Jamie Mayo, Director of Administration Stacey Rowell, and City Engineer Kim Golden
traveled to Baton Rouge, LA, today to go before the Louisiana Senate Committee on Revenue
and Fiscal Affairs. At the 4 pm meeting, Mayo and city officials will seek legislative support
for Senate Bill 33, sponsored by Senator Francis Thompson (D-Delhi). If approved by the
legislature, this bill will allow the I-20 and Tower-Armand Tax Increment Financing Districts in
Monroe to be extended until 2033. These two TIF Districts are currently set to expire in 2025.
Mayor Jamie Mayo says, “Because of the availability and our prudent use of the TIF funds, Monroe has experienced tremendous growth and economic development in the Tower-Armand and I-20 Economic Development Districts. According to our officials, 169 new businesses have opened in those corridors since 2014. We are asking our NELA legislators and those from throughout the entire state to support the extension of these tax benefits, so we can help spur more development and job opportunities that will enhance the quality of life for Monroe residents.”

The designation of a TIF District allows the City of Monroe to retain 40% of the state portion of sales tax revenue generated with the district boundaries. For the Tower-Armand Economic Development District this equates to roughly $1M per year; and, for the I-20 EDD this equates to roughly $3M per year. These TIF District funds are used for infrastructure improvements projects within the district and possible adjacent property. For example: 1) The 5-lane Tower Armand Connector used to be a wooded area, until the City of Monroe was able to use TIF District funds to help build a five-lane road that stretches from Oliver Road to U.S. Hwy 165. This helped spur a tremendous amount of retail, commercial, and residential growth in that corridor. 2) The retail shopping areas that include the Target, Best Buy, and Kohl’s shopping center areas used to be a vacant plot and a huge drainage canal. These very important shopping centers were made possible thanks to infrastructure improvements made with I-20 EDD TIF funds.