Des Plaines council pushing tax incentives for Mariano's
The Des Plaines City Council is expected Monday to bring forth tax incentives that will help bring the grocery store Mariano's to town.
With the city's help, the developer will ask Cook County to authorize a so-called 7B tax incentive that will lower the site's property taxes for 12 years. Aldermen also will vote to rebate 50 percent of Mariano's sales taxes to the developers for the next 10 years, up to a total of $875,000.
First, though, the city council has to approve a resolution declaring the property at the northeast corner of Mount Prospect and Golf roads as blighted.
Without the incentives, the developer has told the city it cannot afford the estimated $24 million project that involves tearing down the old Motor Coach Industries headquarters, cleaning up the site and building a 74,000-square-foot Mariano's grocery store.
Commercial properties in Cook County are typically assessed at 25 percent of their value, but under a 7B incentive, the developer, Abbott Land & Investment Corp., would be assessed at 10 percent for the first 10 years, 15 percent in the 11th year and 20 percent in the 12th year of the agreement, said George Sakas, director of community and economic development for Des Plaines.
Even with the decreased assessment, Sakas said the city would receive more property tax income from the site than if it remains empty.
The sales tax rebates, Sakas said, will partly help pay for $1.3 million in improvements at the intersection of Mount Prospect and Golf roads. Expecting increased traffic, the Illinois Department of Transportation is requiring the improvements, including a new turn lane, so the city would pitch in.
The city estimates Mariano's would bring the city $450,000 in sales tax revenue each year, so it would take about four years of the rebate program to pay off the traffic improvements, Sakas said.
"Those road improvements help everyone," he said.
In April the Des Plaines Park District board approved an agreement to give the Mariano's developer a piece of Blackhawk Park that would become a driveway into the new parking lot.
In exchange, the park district would receive $670,337 from Abbott to make improvements to the park including a new 8-foot-wide asphalt walking path, a picnic shelter, a playground, a 120-by-240-foot soccer field, and trees and landscaping. The park district would get easements on the east and north sides of the grocery store property for landscaping and the new walking path. Another walking path would connect the park to the grocery store.
Both agreements to be discussed and voted on Monday would make the process of converting the 10-acre property more affordable for developers and help the city in the long run, Sakas said.
"We get new roads, we get a lot of sales tax after that rebate agreement is up, the park district is getting a new park and people are getting a Mariano's," he said.
The Mariano's is expected to employ about 70 people full-time and 230 part-time. Construction would begin in 2016.
The council meeting begins at 7 p.m. Monday at city hall, 1420 Miner St.