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The Community Improvement District, or CID, is a separate political subdivision with an appointed board and the power to impose sales and/or property taxes. CIDs can be formed by an ordinance within a governing body when more than 50% of the property owners sign a petition for it be created. Money collected by a CID may go toward public facilities or a variety of public services.

We have a downtown CID in Cape. It was created in 2014 after more than 50% of the property owners in the defined region signed the petition. Mayor Rediger appointed and the City Council approved seven of the property owners to serve on the board. Our downtown CID was established to provide trash and litter pickup, streetscape maintenance, holiday decorations, additional security personnel, security camera incentive programs, marketing and special events.

This example and the others I gave the last few weeks, are just a few ways we have used incentives in our region to make improvements and spur economic development. And having been involved even in a small way in some of these, I believe we are fortunate to have key leaders in our community, who are committed to utilizing these incentives appropriately and being good stewards of public money. 

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This is the second in a series of posts about economic development incentive programs. This week, I would like to briefly discuss Transportation Development Districts or TDDs. The State of Missouri allows certain groups to create a political subdivision that generates funds for transportation improvements through the collection of taxes. TDDs can be formed by registered voters, transportation authorities or property owners and must be approved by the circuit court of the county in which they are formed.

Let’s look at the Veteran’s Memorial Drive to better understand how TDDs work. In this case the entire tract of land had one owner. That owner elected to establish the TDD with a one-cent sales tax to be imposed on future sales. The developer was then responsible for paying all costs to build the road and other transportation infrastructure. After the development is complete, the TDD will begin receiving its portion of the revenue, which will then go back to the developer to reimburse for a portion of the original infrastructure development costs. 

This tool helped provide access and lay the groundwork for the development of the incredible new SportsPlex, which is already bringing visitors to our community. Those visitors stay in our hotels and eat at our restaurants, providing an economic boost to the entire community. With further development, we expect to continue seeing increased activity and City tax revenue as a result of this key regional project.

Check out MODOTs FAQs on TDDs here: http://www.modot.org/partnershipdevelopment/documents/TDDfaq.pdf

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Incentive Programs: TIF

Incentive programs are major tools used by communities to spur economic development, but they are often misunderstood. Over the next few weeks, I’ll briefly describe a few of the tools we use. We’ll start today with Tax Increment Financing, or TIF.

At its core, TIF is simply a municipality diverting future property tax revenue increases in a defined area toward improvements for a period of time. Let’s look at what that means using the Marquette project in downtown Cape.

The City of Cape created a TIF district that included many vacant or nearly vacant buildings, including the Marquette Tower and H&H. Developers then looked at that property with new math. If they rehabbed the building, they could retain some of the increased property and sales tax revenue to help pay a portion of development costs.  

Now here’s the key. The City, County and School were making virtually no revenue from these two buildings. This development, as is the case with all TIF projects, would not occur without the TIF. It’s actually called a “but for,” meaning but for the use of these funds, this project wouldn’t happen. And it is illegal to allow the use of TIF dollars if a but for hasn’t been met.

Because of TIF, we now have a $20 million development including a hotel, restaurants and office space, that wouldn’t have occurred otherwise. City, County and School tax revenue stays exactly the same. Then the hope is that this development will help create other developments, ultimately increasing activity in downtown Cape and improving our community in many ways. 

This is a really simple description. If reading about incentives excites you, here’s a link to some really good information about TIFs: https://www.gilmorebell.com/TIF_101_Part1.pdf.

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WWE Live - RAW

WWE Live returns to the Show Me Center on Sat. Jan. 6th at 7:30pm with your favorite RAW Superstars.  See THE SHIELD - Roman Reigns, Seth Rollins & Dean Ambrose. Plus, Braun Strowman, Samoa Joe, Finn Balor, Sasha Banks, Bray Wyatt, Alexa Bliss and many more!! (card subject to change)

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If you are searching for a new location for your business or perhaps a second location or even want to start a new business venture...we have retail, service and restaurant locations currently available!  We invite you to our Leasing Open House Saturday, Dec 2 from 9am-12pm. Private tours and appointments only by calling Kyla Evans at (573) 472-2222 or kyla.evans@sikestonoutlet.com

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Lutheran Family and Children's Services (LFCS) will host the 30th Annual Holiday Home Tour on Saturday, December 2 from 9 AM to 4 PM.  This year the tour will feature six locations in Cape Girardeau- including several historic homes in the downtown area. 

One of only two large fundraising events for LFCS, the Holiday Home Tour is by far the largest money-maker for the organization.  According to Michelle Ramsey, Regional Development Officer for the Southeast Missouri Region of LFCS, last year approximately 800 tour-goers purchased tickets for the longtime favorite area event.

Ramsey adds, “The big draw for the event is getting an inside look at the beautiful homes and locations that so many people drive by every day.  There’s a natural curiosity inside all of us that is the driving force behind the success of the event.  Often it’s the mystery and intrigue of how we imagine the homes to look on the inside.  How do the homeowners decorate for the holidays?  What is their taste or style of decorating?  And of course there are those who just love to spend time with their friends or loved ones taking in the sights and helping support our cause.” 

Ramsey says that they consider themselves very fortunate to be in such a generous and supportive area.  “We are blessed to have a very dedicated group of supporters that make up the Holiday Home Tour Committee, and that committee is the key to the event’s success.  These members are out networking throughout the year, be it for their professions, social organizations, or with their friends and acquaintances.  When we start planning the next Holiday Home Tour, we discuss potential locations and what we think will draw the most people.”  Ramsey continues, “The home owners should also be acknowledged.  They are opening up their private spaces, filled with their personal belongings for complete strangers to walk through.  Without their willingness to share their homes, this event could not be possible.”

Ramsey also points out that financial profitability of this event would not be possible at all without the support of the area business sponsors.  This year the events Presenting Sponsor is Realty Executives of Cape County.  Additionally, each home has been sponsored by at least one business partner per site.  “Without the support of our sponsors, we would be completely dependent upon ticket sales to raise the funds.  They step up and give this event, and our organization, the financial foundation we need to have a profitable and successful event each and every year.  Our local media outlets are also very supportive in helping us get the word out about our event and sell the tickets in advance, so you can see that without this generous community support, we would be lost,” Ramsey adds.

“We are very excited to announce our tour locations for the 30th Annual Holiday Home Tour,” says Ramsey.  “This year’s tour will offer several historic homes in downtown Cape Girardeau.   A gorgeous home with a beautiful river view built in the early 1900’s owned by Jared Ritter at 214 N. Lorimier, the beautiful multi-generational family home of Mark and Lizz Seesing located at 1008 Good Hope, and the old Hirsch family home owned by Ron and Cindy Buchheit at 1427 William Street.  Additionally, we have three more locations on the west side of town in areas off Bloomfield Road, Tim and Melanie Guttwein’s beautiful home located on Flagstone, the home of Greg and Linda Illers on Blackberry Ridge, and Ted and Jessica Westendorf’s newly renovated home on Kensington.”  According to Ramsey, due to parking limitations, a shuttle will provide transportation to the three homes located off of Bloomfield Road.  The complimentary shuttles are provided by Auffenberg Kia, and the shuttle services will run all day from the former Blue Cross Blue Shield building parking lot.

A Refreshment Stop will also be hosted at the LFCS office in Cape, where guests can enjoy a snack, tour the office and learn more about the good work the organization does, as well as register to win prizes, including $500 CASH, jewelry items, and more.  Guests who bring canned food items when they visit the Refreshment Stop can earn extra entries in the drawings.  In addition, Becky Riney of Signature Homestyles will have the office decorated for the holidays, with items available to purchase that day and a percentage of the sales going to LFCS.

Advance tickets can be purchased for $25 at all area Bank of Missouri locations- Cape Girardeau, Jackson, Scott City, the LFCS office- located at 3178 Blattner Drive, Patrick Furniture at 1140 N. Kingshighway, Sunny Hill Garden Center at 206 N. Kingshighway, and at Southeast Health Volunteer Services inside Southeast Hospital, all located in Cape Girardeau.  Tickets will also be available at the door of any of the featured homes for $30 the day of the tour. For more information, contact Michelle Ramsey at (573) 450-4675. 

LFCS is a non-profit, statewide, social service organization with offices in Cape Girardeau, St. Louis, Columbia and Springfield.  The organization touches the lives of more than 22,000 individuals annually. The Cape Girardeau office serves the entire Southeast Missouri area providing a multitude of services like adoption, crisis pregnancy assistance, and parenting classes.   LFCS also offers court ordered supervised visitation and assisted custody exchange services, as well as emergency assistance with food, baby items, and water assistance.  In addition to the services geared toward women and children, the organization also provides older adult services out of the Cape Girardeau location.  These services include Alzheimer’s and dementia support groups for both those with the diseases and the caregivers, and a Memory Matters group class for those suffering with memory loss.  Services provided by LFCS are open to everyone regardless of race, faith, national origin, gender or age. Although Lutheran based, more than 80 percent of families served are non-Lutheran. For more information, visit www.lfcsmo.org.  

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Editor’s note: Lutheran Family and Children’s Services of Southeast Missouri is located at: 3178 Blattner Drive, Cape Girardeau, Mo. (63703)

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Tri-State Holiday Party

Join Tri-State Advertising & Marketing Professionals at Broadway Biergarten on November 28, 2017, for their annual holiday party. Guests are welcome to arrive directly after work, between 5:00pm and 5:30pm. Heavy appetizers will be provided. The event will begin with announcements at 5:30pm followed by fun industry-related games. An attendance prize will be given out as well as prizes to the winners of the games. There is no end time for this evening event, so guests can stay as late as they like. Come to enjoy the company of like-minded marketing and advertising professionals, network and celebrate the 2017 holiday season.

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Magic of Lights

Magic of Lights is a dazzling 1.5-mile drive-through holiday lights show featuring more than 300 spectacular displays using the latest LED technology and digital animations. Experience Magic of Lights from the comfort of your own car as you wind through the sparkling path of St. Louis's newest favorite holiday tradition. One carload, one price. Magic of Lights is a great family entertainment value, and every ticket to Magic of Lights benefits Cardinals Care.

Open from dusk to 10:00 p.m. November 17 – January 1 at the Gateway Motorsports Park

700 Raceway Blvd

Madison, IL 62060

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Crypto Currency Luncheon

Local merchants, join Computer 21, LLC on November 16, 2017 from 11:30 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. at 920 Broadway, the Innovation Center in room 114, for a crypto currency luncheon. Topics of discussion include how to accept, account for, transact in and convert cryptos to dollars. 

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Military Appreciation Day

Join the Cape Girardeau Career and Technology Center for a Military Appreciation Day on November 10, 2017 from 7:30 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. at the Cape Girardeau Career and Technology Center. For more information, please call Rebecca Peters at 334-0826 EXT. 6503 or email petersrj@capetigers.com to set up a time to take a tour that day! If you can’t make it that day, we can schedule you for a different day and time.

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