Transcripts of full meetings of the council.

Good morning. It's Tiffany Green. I'm commenting on this bill for -- it's coming up for final passage. I would hope that we would start the new year off in an honorable manner. Back in September of 2012, this ten-year tax abatement bill was submitted in, and at the time, it read it would be reduced down to five years and then 20 percent each time, from 80 to 60 to 40 to 70 [sic].

Now, at this particular point, when we met with Councilman Goode, we went over the bill and we supported it. For a whole year this bill has been sitting like this. We reached out to other groups and we told the groups about the bill, and they said that they could live with that, that the ten-year tax abatement would be reduced down to five years and then reduced 20 percent until it expires. But last year in June, in the last two weeks or three weeks, this was changed back up to ten years, up to ten years, and this is like a bait and switch, and this is not fair, because we stand here today begging for money for our kids to have school supplies. And as we all know, property taxes go towards -- a portion of the property taxes go towards our kids and the school system. Yet we still want to stick with this ten-year tax abatement. This is not right. If you're going to go down to five years, then you should stick with that.

Secondly, it was not really publicized and there was no real hearings on the new amendment that was submitted back in late June 2013. That's why we consider this a bait and switch, because there was no time to even have public hearings on the fact that you raise it back up to ten years and then at the fifth year you want to start the expiration.

Right now you have thousands of condominium buildings with one, two, three units -- I mean, 100 to 300 units all getting ten-year tax abatement. What you fail to realize is that one building has a transfer. So one owner can transfer the ten-year tax abatement to 200 different individual housing units. So that means that you have multiple -- instead what you have on the books is showing one tax abatement for one building, you have a transfer to multiple homeowners, condominium owners.

I'm saying that this bill needs to be voted down today. It needs to go back through the right process. It needs to have public hearings on this new amendment bill. And if you're going to go down to five years and the groups agree to that, then let's do that, because this is about having money for our School District and our kids. We shouldn't have to go around begging for supply money.

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