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Reminder: Public Invited to Learn More About Tax Increment Financing Possibilities for Collins Company Complex

June 27, 2016 Business, Community, Government No Comments

By John Fitts 

COLLINSVILLE — On Tuesday representatives from Camoin Associates will be in town to learn more about the Collins Company complex, the town’s hopes to spur redevelopment there and to share with business owners, officials and residents the possibilities of Tax Increment Financing.

Earlier this year, encouraged by revamped state legislation, the town chose to formally explore Tax Increment Financing, or TIF as an option to encourage redevelopment. TIF is the concept of taking some of the future tax revenues from a development and investing back into the project itself  – or related improvements.

On Tuesday, June 28, representatives from the Saratoga-Springs based Camoin Associates, contracted to help the town develop a TIF Master Plan, will be in town to tour the complex, meet with local merchants, speak with the complex owner, talk to potential developers and attend two public meetings. The first of the public meetings will be at 3:30 p.m. with the town’s TIF Steering Committee, Town Leaders and staff. It takes place in the Canton Community Center, Room C.

At 7 p.m., the consultants will hold a public education workshop in Room F of the community center. The meeting is designed to provide an overview of TIF and how it could be used to encourage redevelopment.

“I think it will be a good opportunity for the public to learn more about the possible options to encourage re-development of the Collins Company,” Hill said.

Hill added that the tomorrow is really just the beginning in the roadmap for the town. Officials have emphasized that a TIF plan is a potential tool but doesn’t obligate the town in any way.

“This is only the first step in the process,” Hill said.

The Camoin Associates contract to develop the TIF master plan is $19,520. Earlier this year, Canton received a $10,000 from Connecticut Main Street Center to help develop a TIF district and Master Plan and the balance of the funding is from the Canton Economic Development Agency’s marketing budget.

The Collins Company operated from the 1820s to 1966.  With its 19 acres and 13 buildings the complex is still an active one with some 40 tenants that include and antiques business, artists, photographers, woodworkers, a teen alternative metal workers and more.

However, officials believe the property’s potential goes far beyond the approximate $32,131 in yearly tax revenue it generates. More concerning for many is the rapidly deteriorating conditions at the factory. However, there are a wide array of opinions in town about the idea of redevelopment.

The partnership that currently owns the factory, managed by James Tilney has listed the property with Colliers International for $3.9 million.

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