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New ETID Law Creates Powerful Financing Tool for Municipalities to Deal with Brownfield Sites

Public Finance Alert Scott L. Langlois, Brian G. Lanser

2017 Act 70 created new Section 66.1105(20m) effective November 29, 2017 which totally revised the old law for environmental remediation tax incremental financing districts (ETIDs) providing that ETIDs created under the new law (new ETIDs) have significant advantages.  Some highlights of this new ETID law follow:

  • Each municipality can create one new ETID.
  • The new ETID will be excluded from the 12% value limit.  This will be particularly useful for municipalities that have reached their 12% limit with previous TIDs.
  • Upon creation, the ETID’s tax incremental base becomes $1.00.  Therefore, all of the existing assessed value within the new ETID becomes tax increment.
  • Maximum life is 27 years with the possibility of a 3 year standard extension.
  • The broad definition of “project costs” under the TID statute applies to new ETIDs, unlike the old ETID statute where only environmental costs would be eligible project costs.
  • At least 50% of the new ETID area must have “significant environmental pollution.”  This means that almost half of the new ETID can contain property which is not contaminated.

The new ETID statute provides municipalities with a powerful tool to obtain financing for the redevelopment of contaminated property.  Quarles & Brady LLP has successfully represented a municipality in creating the first new ETID in Wisconsin and is working on others.  If you would like any further information about this powerful tool to assist municipalities in redeveloping blighted or contaminated properties, please contact us.