Committee sends proposals for 2 economic improvement districts to full council

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – The Metropolitan and Economic Development Committee sent a pair of economic improvement district proposals on to the full City-County Council for consideration next Monday night.

The Greater Virginia Avenue Corridor EID garnered support from 54% of its property owners representing 69% of the community’s assessed value.

The GVAC EID would raise $82,000 a year from property owners along Virginia Avenue to Fountain Square, east along Prospect Street and south along Shelby Street.

The committee passed the GVAC EID by a 7-2 margin.

The Mile Square EID to raise $3 million annually to support, enhance and maintain downtown survived to fight another day without a committee recommendation.

The downtown EID referendum surveyed approximately 1,700 commercial and private property owners and squeaked by with just barely above 50% support.

Even those YES votes are in doubt as some owners have changed their minds, some properties have been sold and hundreds of downtown land owners either couldn’t be reached, refused to vote or simply said NO.

Councilman Zach Adamson proposed a successful measure to pass the Mile Square EID on to the full council without a committee recommendation to allow supporters more time to firm up their ballots before the June 18 meeting.

Indianapolis is currently the largest city in the United States without such a self-taxing district which raises the money to do the maintenance, improvements, homeless outreach and marketing strategy that the current city budget won’t pay for.

Opponents warn the EID would face a court challenge because of the questionable validity of the majority signatures and inequities in property classification.

If the Mile Square EID fails before the full council, it is doubtful such a future proposal would pass as new state legislation sets a 60% majority rate for consideration.