Editorial: Put TIF To Work

Development tool is too important not to use.
Editorial: Put TIF To Work




Madison Mayor Paul Soglin’s commitment to revising city TIF policies is welcome news that will only help with badly needed economic development in the city.

Tax incremental financing is an often misunderstood city tool to help developers balance the costs of building and the gap between buying land and realizing revenues sufficient to start paying taxes. Often TIF is the difference between a great development idea getting off the ground or not.

Pat of the problem is TIF is complicated and hard to explain. And it is often wrongly characterized as a handout to developers. It is anything but. In addition there are different types of TIF, some of which Madison has simply not taken advantage. It should. And thanks to Soglin and his planning and development team it looks like it will. The East Washington Avenue corridor in particular is teed up for smart TIF policies, but the rest of the city will benefit as well. This is good news and we support it.