Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Not Quite "Breaking" News: Weber County Hires Consultant to Explore Tax Funding for Powder Mountain Development

Tax increment "pro-corporatist" funding redux; or a good idea?

At the gentle urging of yet another sharp-eyed WCF reader who, as an added bonus, actually resides in Ogden Valley, we'll shine the spotlight on a possibly troubling Salt Lake Tribune story that's now been simmering on our discussion-queue "back-burner" for the past week or so.  On the heels of the Weber County Commission's March 26 decision to issue a $22.5 million assessment bond to fund public road, water and sewer improvements in and around the Summit Group's 1500 acre Powder Mountain property, and in the wake of recently "touchy" relations between that invester/developer group and certain Eden residents stemming from "a little too much alleged hard partying" in a formerly quiet Eden residential neighborhood, here's the 5/10/13 Cathy McKitrick story that's providing our Gentle Reader (and a few other Ogden Valley residents) the most recent added heartburn:
Welfare for the Rich
In short, the wonderful  Ms. McKitrick reports that The Weber County Commission "hired" a private consultant on or about May 7 of this year, to look into the prospect of establishing a Community Development Area (CDA), floating a possible bond, and then (of course) flooding the Powder Mountain area with millions of taxpayer dollars to be directed toward additional development capital, all to be repaid via former Ogden Mayor Boss Godfrey's bestest friend,  tax-increment finance funding.

Although Ogden City residents have again become very recently familiar with the the inherent perils of even at least ostensibly well-intended tax increment financing schemes, here's a fairly decent Wikipedia mini-treatise for those WCF readers who might not be suitably "edumacated" on the subject:
That's it for now, folks.  Suffice it to say we'll be checking up on this weirdly and potentially cronycapitalist story as it develops.

So what about you, O Gentle Ones? Insofar as this story has developed, do you see any "red" flags?

Or alternatively... is this a good idea?


Ogden Res said...

If you have to have development, it could be a lot worse. This will be classy development, by successful people who will be more likely to care for the environment.

Not like the instant slums being built by the river in downtown Ogden, or the high-density retirement flop house being built up by Old Saint Benedict Manor. Everything Ogden Planning comes up with is high density, because it gives the bureaucrats more to do. The city council is a useless rubber stamp.

The one concern I have is all these rich guys will start saying this place should "explode", meaning become overrun and squalid.

Hopefully these people will adopt the California model - preserve the values of open space and nature that drew them here in the first place.

blackrulon said...

Is the consultant Matthew Godfrey? sound just what his career has been since he stopped being mayor of Ogden

Ogden Lover said...

Once again, if it's such a great idea, why not get funding from private backers to make these improvements? The purpose of government is to provide services for the residents, who in this case are being bled dry already.

I'm sure the laid-off librarians will love waiting tables and cleaning toilets at the new resort.

Stringtownn Rd said...

I'm sure that is a privilege most developers would like to see. Well played Summit.

Watch Out For Gibson said...

One thing's for sure. We can count on neocon, pro-Big Money County Commissioner Kerry Gibson to lobby the other two Commissioners to dole out as much money to his "rich foiks" constuency every time he can.

Watch Out For Gibson said...

One thing's for sure. We can count on neocon, pro-Big Money County Commissioner Kerry Gibson to lobby the other two Commissioners to dole out as much money to his "rich folks" constituency every time he can.

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