TIRZ to shoulder $12M in potential projects

Over $12 million in potential projects will be included in a proposed city of Dripping Springs Tax Increment Reinvestment Zone (TIRZ) for a proposed town center.

Earlier this month, the Dripping Springs ISD Board of Trustees took up the issue, which included a preliminary project plan and financing plan for the proposed Town Center TIRZ. DSISD, however, cannot participate in the financial portion of the TIRZ.

“The district has been in informal conversations with the city for many years over this issue. Conversations have become more concrete and specific in the past six months or so,” Superintendent Bruce Gearing said.

The plan, created through a partnership that involves the city of Dripping Springs, Hays County and Library District, outlines the basic structure and goals of establishing the TIRZ, which will help with development projects in the area.

“The potential exists for a strong partnership between the city of Dripping Springs, the Dripping Springs Community Library, and the school district, with benefits for all involved. We are early in the process and we look forward to working closely with these entities to work out the details over time,” said Gearing.

According to the plan, Dripping Springs has land available for development within city limits, along with areas of substandard development the city wishes to improve as a way of maximizing property values.

However, the city needs additional means of planning for and providing infrastructure to promote overall quality development in the area, hence the establishment of the TIRZ.

Rather than seeking alternative means of financing infrastructure and other development projects, the city may use the TIRZ as a financing tool for these improvement projects.

City officials believe a TIRZ is the best mechanism to partner with Hays County and private sector developers to plan, fund, and construct the needed improvements over a long-range time period.

“The district cannot participate in the financial portions of the TIRZ and can only be involved in the projects outlined in the formal TIRZ documents,” Gearing said. “[But] I am grateful for my assignment to the TIRZ boards in order to represent the district’s interests in these projects.”

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