City council considers issuing TIF bonds for Valor Acres infrastructure

by Kathleen Steele Gaivin
April 5 city council meeting
Brecksville City council heard a first reading on a proposed ordinance authorizing the city to issue tax incremental funding revenue bonds of up to $12 million to pay for public improvements in and around the Valor Acres development April 5.

“The best way to look at this is that this is one more step in a process that’s been going on for at least four years now as part of the redevelopment of the Valor Acres site,” said Greg Daniels, a partner at Squire Patton Boggs.

Daniels said the TIF bonds under consideration focus on the residential portion of Valor Acres, noting that “it monetizes some of the TIF revenue from the multifamily development.” He said it is typical for communities to monetize the 30-year stream of TIF revenue through the issuance of bonds.

“The developer has requested, as is their right under the TIF agreement, that the city issue bonds to help them to finance the upfront costs of the infrastructure,” Daniels said. “It’s not going to be the whole infrastructure; it’s going to be roughly half of the infrastructure. They’re going to have to carry the other half for a while until they build up the rest of the site.”

According to Daniels, the developer has agreed to pay a $250,00 fee upfront to help defray city’s costs in issuing the bonds, “and provide some additional revenue to Brecksville.”

He added that the developer will also pay a $15,000 a year ongoing fee to further defray the city’s costs.

If the TIF bonds are approved, there will be a lien placed on the multifamily project to secure the funds. If the project were to fail, investors would look to have the lien enforced in order to get paid, Daniels said.

In other action, the service department will spend $12,617 to buy 65 new and replacement spring trees for various areas around the city. Brecksville purchases new and replacement trees twice a year. Service Director Ron Weidig said many of the trees will be planted on tree lawns in new developments.

City council also authorized the purchase of 21 replacement computers for the city’s various departments. The computers are routinely replaced every five years, Purchasing Director Becki Riser said.

The city will spend $25,000 on purchases for the new Blossom Hill Field House, mostly for office equipment and electronics.

“We’re starting to get down to the wire with setting up offices and the conference room and that type of thing—things that the city does to make the building function,” Weidig said.

City council authorized the mayor to apply for a grant through the Ohio Department of Natural Resources. Brecksville has the opportunity to re-submit their NatureWorks Round 27 grant application for $52,546 to be used toward constructing a pavilion and a concrete walkway as part of the recreational development of the Stadium Drive property.

Phase 3 of the window replacement project at Building 7 on the Blossom Hill property, the Montessori School building, is about to get underway with a $72,8000 approval from city council, of which $43 will be paid from a NOPEC grant. Fourteen windows will be replaced during this phase, which is less than planned, because of the increased cost of aluminum. Originally, Weidig said, the city intended to replace all of the windows in four phases. With rising costs, he said, it will probably take six or seven phases. ∞