Polson’s Tax Increment Finance District funds available to invest

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A resolution adopted in 1997 identified and designated four areas in Polson as blighted and called for the creation of an urban renewal plan. Three years later in 2000, Polson’s Tax Increment Finance (TIF) District and Polson Redevelopment Agency (PRA) were born.

The PRA — an advisory board to the Polson City Commission — is charged with assisting in the administration and implementation of Polson’s TIF district; this includes making recommendations to the City Commission on how TIF funds should be spent on projects that ameliorate blight in the district.

Currently there are TIF funds available to be invested in projects that improve the blighted district. The PRA partners with public and private entities to help improve economic vitality, create jobs, and encourage investment in the district. The PRA also invests in improvements like parks, trails, streets and sidewalks.

To learn more about the funding program and to obtain an application, refer to the program package links below. All completed applications should be submitted to the City of Polson. The PRA will review and make recommendations to the Polson City Commission on a quarterly basis. The City Commission will issue approval/disapproval of all funding requests.

‘One Stop Shop’

In October of 2018, the Greater Polson Community Foundation joined the City of Polson, the Polson Redevelopment Agency (PRA), the Polson Chamber of Commerce, and Lake County Community Development Corporation (LCCDC) in a partnership to put “boots on the ground,” working together to leverage the resources of the group to infuse energy and focus into the Polson economy, to build on existing ideas, ensure presence at events and community meetings, convene community and business leaders where necessary, provide outreach and education on behalf of the partnership, and to collaborate with downtown businesses to develop projects in the Tax Increment Financing (TIF) district while promoting long-term business interests in the Polson community.

Amber Blodgett, who serves as the Polson Chamber of Commerce Manager half-time, was hired in March of 2019 as the Business Development Coordinator by LCCDC for this collaboration. Business technical assistance is available through Amber to review proposed PRA project, funding and leverage of resources. This partnership highlights and increases the capacity and the visibility of the Polson Chamber as a “One Stop Shop” for business resources, tourism, and community information. With increased access to resources, it heightens the effectiveness and creates opportunities for groups who have not worked together previously to join forces and collaborate.

For more information on this collaboration or for information on business services or the eligibility for Polson Redevelopment Agency funding, contact Amber at the Chamber office at 406-883-5969, or via email at amber.blodgett@lakecountycdc.org to schedule an appointment.

PRA Funding in Action

The perfect example of the “One Stop Shop” is a recent, new to Polson, business that received technical assistance in business development from LCCDC and was referred into this collaboration. It is REcreate Designs.

Subsequently, they received: project funding from a regional community bank; exposure to the community from Polson Rotary in inviting this business to present at a downtown community meeting: and assistance in completing an application to the PRA resulting in further investment in their business. They have subsequently joined the Chamber. Watch for the Grand Opening of REcreate Designs at 212 Main St. All of these activities are not initiated in one conversation — it is about building long-term relationships between businesses and community.

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