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posted: 1/20/2014 5:00 AM

What's the real story behind village TIF?

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The village of Schaumburg wants a new $512 million north Schaumburg TIF to fix alleged "blight."

When the village hired consultant Teska Associates to prepare a TIF evaluation, it was for about 175 acres around the Convention Center. Then, in mid-study, the village suddenly expanded the blighted area to 1,070 acres. That is six times larger.

When I requested public documents to show why this happened I was told these are "preliminary" documents not subject to FOIA law. I say they are hiding something.

I think a company called Sunstar came along with a proposed new headquarters on farmland over a mile away from the TIF along I-90 and wanted a public subsidy. The village "solution" was to expand the TIF district so the Sunstar property was contiguous to the TIF and eligible for TIF funds to subsidize Sunstar.

This exposes this TIF as wholesale abuse of the TIF Act. This TIF is a slush fund for corporate subsidies and pet projects. It has nothing to do with fixing blight.

Tim Costin

Elk Grove Village

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