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Treasury Request Legislation to Spur Economic Development, Local Partnerships Signed

Governor Inslee signing HB 1527 Tax Incrament Financing bill with State Treasurer Pellicciotti, Rep. Sharon Wylie, and Port of Vancouver staff.

OLYMPIA – Legislation updating Washington’s Tax Increment Financing (TIF) program was signed into law today. House Bill 1527, requested by the Office of the State Treasurer (OST) and sponsored by Rep. Sharon Wylie (D-Vancouver), will expand eligible uses of this financing tool to spur infrastructure and economic development projects around the state.

“In partnership with a bipartisan coalition of support, we’ve taken a concrete step to ensure a pathway for key local development projects to move forward for the benefit of communities in every part of Washington,” said State Treasurer Mike Pellicciotti. “This is a big win for municipal governments and a continued commitment to build and rebuild thriving local economies,” he said.

Designed to encourage private development and investment, TIF is a financing tool that local governments may use to help fund public projects by using the increased property tax revenue from the development to finance infrastructure improvements.

One project likely to move ahead thanks to the signing of HB 1527 is the redevelopment of Terminal 1, with project goals of opening a new 40,000-square-foot public market on the Vancouver waterfront with market booths for locally-sourced produce, space for boutiques and shopping, as well as dining, craft breweries and regional wineries.

“Ports not being able to participate in TIF programs has left money on the table for countless cities across the State,” said Rep. Wylie. “It’s great to see this technical fix in the bill is already paying dividends. The revenue raised will create jobs and fund public spaces we can all enjoy. I look forward to seeing what else comes from this.”

Sen. Annette Cleveland (D-Vancouver) sponsored the Senate companion of the legislation, Senate Bill 5539.

In addition to the Port of Vancouver development, projects in Kirkland, Pasco, Lakewood and with the Chelan Douglas Regional Port Authority are also looking to move forward thanks to the bill.

OST will be hosting an event in partnership with Rep. Wylie next month to highlight the development opportunities in Vancouver. Details for the public event to follow.