From time to time, the topic of the “TIRZ District” comes up. When it does, few seem to understand what it is or what it was meant to accomplish, so I thought I would give it a stab and try to explain.
In 2005, the Flower Mound Town Council partnered with Denton County to create a TIRZ or Tax Increment Reinvestment Zone (see accompanying map) that would allow all property tax collections from this area to be reinvested into the same area. When you pay your property taxes each year, approximately 70 percent goes to the school district, 20 percent to the Town of Flower Mound, and 10 percent to Denton County.
When your property taxes are collected, the Town of Flower Mound uses them to cover a myriad of items but the greatest expense is to pay the salaries of the 500 or so employees that make our Town run.
However, in this instance, the funds from this zone are segregated into a separate account and don’t go to the Town’s general fund for general expenses. Because of this, the county has agreed to match the Town for every $2 dollars we collect, they will contribute approximately $1 (it declines slightly over time) with the intent to reinvest and develop this area. It is by design that the zone follows right along the FM 2499 corridor.
The partnership with the county runs through 2025 when the TIRZ district will be dissolved.
In the original project plan, which can be amended by the TIRZ board and the Flower Mound Town Council, there were numerous items such as streets, water, and wastewater projects but the bulk of the planned expenditures– over 60 percent– were for municipal facilities such as a Town Hall and Senior Center.
The good news is the available funds are exceeding original projections.
In 2005, it was estimated that by 2016 the cumulative total collected would be $18.4 million for projects, but the actual amount is $21.6 million. As the TIRZ District is tracking ahead of schedule, and there is more clarity with only 10 years remaining, the estimated cumulative revenue has been revised from the original estimate of $62.5 million to $72.6 million.
So why bring this up now? Over the next several months the Town Council will, in earnest, begin discussions on building a new Town Hall to bring the majority of our employees under one roof and perhaps expanding the Library.
These projects will not be cheap. I’m ball-parking numbers, but a new Town Hall could cost approximately $14 million, and a Library facelift and expansion may be an additional $10 million dollars.
The funding source we will look toward is the TIRZ district. Additionally, since the funding is completely separate from other projects, this will have no impact on the Town’s general fund and plans for additional Public Safety buildings, road construction projects, or wastewater and sewer projects.
Stay tuned, it is an exciting time to be in Flower Mound. As always, if you have questions or suggestions please send me an email at [email protected].