Lake Zurich has approved a sales-tax rebate agreement that may result in up to $2 million going to a developer planning to build a Mariano's Fresh Market as part of a retail project at Route 22 and Quentin Road.
Although they raised some questions and concerns, village trustees voted 5-0 at a special meeting Monday in favor of the deal benefiting Chicago-based Bradford Real Estate Cos.
Trustee Jeff Halen said the village board had little time to study and discuss the agreement that was quickly hatched last week and he doesn't want a repeat scenario for similar deals in the future.
"This is a big deal," Halen said.
If built, the 74,000-square-foot Mariano's would be joined by a McDonald's restaurant and two banks at what's called Bradford Town Crossing. The project would be at the northwest corner of Quentin and Route 22 near Harvest Bible Church.
Under the incentive agreement, Lake Zurich will rebate an estimated $1.5 million in sales tax generated principally by Mariano's to reimburse Bradford for its costs to make off-site improvements necessary for the development. Bradford's expenses are to include constructing a left-turn lane on Route 22, along with extending and installing about 1,600 feet of public water main north across Harvest Bible's property and west to Cedar Creek subdivision.
An additional rebate provision may generate another $500,000 for the developer, officials said, bringing the total incentive package to roughly $2 million. While the deal calls for payments to stretch over 20 years, a memo from Lake Zurich Building and Zoning Director Daniel Peterson states it may only take a little more than half the expected time to refund the full amount to Bradford.
Bradford is the contract purchaser of the land and intends to begin clearing trees if the deal closes by year's end. Plans call for Mariano's to open in January 2014, with the banks and McDonald's following much the same time frame. Lake Zurich's agreement with Bradford says the project became "economically undesirable" without the incentives. The Lake Zurich village board approved the proposed development in July without the sales-tax rebates.
Bradford received a similar economic inducement in 2011 to bring Mariano's to Vernon Hills. The Vernon Hills village board agreed to rebate up to $1.5 million in sales taxes over 15 years in the deal with Bradford.