OGDEN — An item related to the creation of a tax-incentivized redevelopment of the Ogden airport was axed from a recent city council meeting, but officials say the deal is still progressing and could even include some additional players.
A resolution that would have established a redevelopment survey area at the Ogden-Hinckley was removed from the council’s Tuesday agenda, a request made by the city administration. Establishing the survey area is the first of many steps the city must take to create a Community Reinvestment Area. CRAs freeze the tax valuation for all taxable properties inside an area that’s been tabbed for reinvestment.
For a specified duration or up to a certain dollar amount, future increases in property tax revenue are used in the redevelopment effort, a mechanism called Tax Increment Financing. The TIF money is then given to developers as incentive to build and can be used for things like street and utility improvements, hazardous waste removal, property acquisition and the demolition of blighted buildings.
Ogden Mayor Mike Caldwell said the item was removed because the city thinks they can garner some additional, outside support for the project.
“We’ve had a number of conversations on the state level and we think there are some opportunities for partnership there, so we want to vet those out before we come back and put anything in stone,” Caldwell said.
The mayor described the airport as a “regional facility” that benefits other local, state and federal agencies in the Northern Utah area. The airport offers private and business general aviation service, commercial air service and air ambulance service. It also serves as a reliever airport for the Salt Lake International Airport and for aircraft flying in and out of Hill Air Force Base.
“We’ve been having conversations (at the 2019 General Legislative Session) about how to possibly share some of the (cost) burden,” Caldwell said. “The state could possibly help with some of the water, sewer and roadway infrastructure. Some of the things that as a city, we don’t necessarily have the means to do immediately.”
Though specific projects within the plan have not yet been revealed, Ogden Deputy Director of Community and Economic development Brandon Cooper told the city council in January that the Airport CRA could include $350 million to $400 million in expenditures, adding approximately $300 million in taxable valuation at the airport.
The facility has long been subsidized by the city and officials there have been exploring several options to make it more profitable.