five developers in five cities every year to not just capture part of the property taxes from the brownfield (which is a site contaminated or environmentally damaged by previous users) they are redeveloping, but also $40 million worth of income taxes for 20 years. Whose income taxes? Remarkably, as soon as work on the site begins, the developers will be able call dibs on the income taxes paid by their own construction workers. And once the project is completed, a portion of the income taxes of the residents and the sales taxes of the businesses will be handed over to these developers as well.
The real kicker is that the bill would allow only developers who are planning "mixed use" residential and commercial projects to be eligible — and only if they make out-of-pocket investments worth $500 million in cities with a population of over 600,000. This basically means that in Detroit, only Gilbert's Hudson redevelopment project would fit the bill. This bill is custom-built just for him.
This is galling. The bill will change the tax code to deliver a guaranteed revenue stream directly into the pocket of a rich developer without even subjecting it to the normal budgetary process where the needs of ordinary mortals are considered.
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