CHATHAM — If Mayor Rahm Emanuel has his way, the 89th state Tax Increment Financing district would become the eighth TIF to be terminated during his tenure.
The Chatham TIF has $550,000 remaining in its pot and is set to expire in 2021.
But at a November City Council meeting, the mayor said he supported a proposal to terminate the TIF, one of 154 in the city, because it had achieved its goal of providing funding for public infrastructure in the area, and there are no pending projects that need TIF assistance.
“If a TIF district succeeds in meeting its objectives before it's set to expire, it should be terminated,” Emanuel said in a news release.
He added that the TIF was created in 1998 to jumpstart the redevelopment of a 38-acre industrial site in the South Side community.
The 143-home Chatham Club residential development at 90th Street and Indiana Avenue was among the projects that benefited from the TIF.
And the newly built South Shore International College Prep High School, 1955 E. 75th St., also benefited from the TIF, according to Roosevelt Vonil, president of the Greater Chatham Alliance, a nonprofit.
Ald. Michelle Harris (8th), whose ward includes South Shore high school, was unavailable for comment.
TIF districts were introduced in 1986 as a means to use property taxes to spur economic development in blighted areas. But TIF opponents such as Tom Tresser, co-founder of the Civic Lab, contend that since its creation billions of dollars from TIF districts have gone to finance private development projects that are not in economically challenged neighborhoods.
Peter Strazzabosco, deputy commissioner for the city's Department of Housing and Economic Development, said if the Council votes in favor of the proposal, $109,000 would go back to the city, while Chicago Public Schools would get $293,000. The Cook County Forest Preserve, Water Reclamation District, City Colleges of Chicago and other governmental bodies would also get money, but Strazzabosco did not have specific figures.
Ald. Roderick Sawyer (6th), whose ward includes the Chatham TIF district, did not return repeated phone calls.