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updated: 8/2/2011 2:53 PM

Round Lake Beach looks to new TIF for street and other upgrades

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One of the original neighborhoods in Round Lake Beach would see a multimillion-dollar makeover through a plan being pursued by village officials.

Roads would be rebuilt, water mains replaced and sewers upgraded as part of a special financing district that would cover about 900 properties on the southwest side of the village.

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A large part of the area would be the neighborhood east of Cedar Lake Road and south of Rollins Road, although some properties north of Rollins also are targeted.

Stretches of Cedar Lake and Rollins also would be included in the proposed Southwest Area tax increment financing district as potential redevelopment areas.

"The TIF would be one component the village would be utilizing in an overall capital plan," for that area, said Village Administrator Dave Kilbane.

Tax increment financing provides a way to pay for the work, although grants or other sources of funds can also be sought.

"Right now we're talking about pay as you go, but things could change," Kilbane said.

In a TIF district, property tax payments to local governments are frozen. If land value rises, the corresponding increase in property taxes would be set aside in a special fund to pay for improvements within the district.

The possible redevelopment along Cedar Lake and Rollins roads could total $30 million to $40 million.

"It allows us to run some services to the area that need to be serviced," said Mayor Rich Hill.

The work would include replacing roads in mostly residential areas that were built as far back as the 1920s, when the area first was platted. Many of the roads were built on substandard bases and would have to be excavated and replaced from the ground up.

The village hopes that with the improvements property values will increase.

"The theory of TIF is but for the TIF you wouldn't have that significant value increase," explained Bob Rychlicki, vice-president of Kane, McKenna and Associates, Inc., the village's consultant.

Round Lake Beach has used TIF districts for both redevelopment and neighborhood improvements. The first one, in a commercial corridor near Rollins Road and Route 83, was established in 1986, for example.

"We've been very successful in our prior TIFs," Hill said.

The first two will have expired and the third one will do so next year.

"This would be the only one left," Kilbane said. "We purposely waited to have further discussion until the other areas came off."

Discussion of the fourth TIF district -- which would last 17 years -- began last fall and village officials have spoken with the affected taxing bodies.

The first public meeting on the proposal was held last week and village officials hope to finish the public input process by the end of the year.

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