Revitalization plan has attracted participants, but more invited

One of the factors that created an opportunity for Welsh Coin Laundry to locate in Hillsboro was the city?s relatively new Neighborhood Revitalization Program, which offers tax incentives for commercial and residential landowners to make improvements on their properties.

Sandy and Ken Welsh, owners of the proposed laundry, are among several business and home owners in the designated area of Hillsboro to take advantage of the opportunity to give their property a facelift without paying taxes on the improvements.

That?s a good start, but Mayor Delores Dalke, hopes more people will realize the opportunity that the NRP offers.

?As we?re encouraging people to improve their residences through our clean-up program in town, if they would just stop and think if they would apply for this Neighborhood Revitalization, they might even end up with some tax savings by doing some minor things to their property,? she said.

The measure was passed last May as an incentive to get people to do some fix-up in some of the areas that need it badly.

According to the plan, commercial buildings that make improvements that add 15 percent to the appraised value, and residences that add 5 percent to the value, will receive a tax break through 2009.

The property will remain at its current appraised value during the remaining nine years.

For example, if an owner of a home with an appraisal value of $3,000, which is 11.5 percent of the real value, made improvements that increased the appraised value to $10,000, the homeowner would continue to pay taxes based on the original $3,000 valuation.

A person could actually destroy their home, build a new one, and still pay taxes on the rate of the old home through 2009.

?People just need to keep remembering that it is out there,? Dalke said. ?It?s a huge benefit.?

Those who want a tax rebate must apply for it before they start making improvements.

?All it takes is going to city hall and filling in an application, then getting the building permit for the improvements they plan to make,? Dalke said.

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