In an effort to provide another financial funding tool to address public improvement projects, the McPherson City Commission has approved a policy that allows the establishment of a Community Improvement District.

The CID was considered because of difficulty finding an acceptable funding solution to pay for the current private drive leading from Champlin Street east to the Holiday Inn Express parking lot. This area has been the subject of criticism for years due to excessive potholes and limited maintenance. Currently, the road is privately owned and the city has no responsibility for fixing or maintaining the roadway, which is in serious deterioration.

According to City Administrator Nick Gregory, a CID is a financial funding tool created by the Kansas State Legislature in 2009 (K.S.A. 12-6a26 et seq.). It is designed to help Kansas communities facilitate beneficial private development and redevelopment without negatively impacting the tax base of the city.

“It is the policy of the City of McPherson to have the option to utilize the provisions of the CID Act to assist private developers by providing financing for commercial, industrial and mixed-use projects,” he said.

A CID must be formed by the petition of landowners within the proposed CID. According to the CID Act, a petition to create a CID must be signed by the owners of at least 55 percent of the total land area and total assessed property value within the proposed district.

Gregory noted the CID is “one of few financial resources available that will assist in repairing the identified road.” Thus, city officials are working diligently with all landowners involved to establish a local CID. The project will be subject to the notice and hearing process.

The City of McPherson passed a policy to allow for the potential use of a CID at the Jan. 23 City Commission meeting. The city policy requires developers interested in the CID financing option to pay for initial costs up front and be reimbursed for their expenses from an additional increment of sales tax collected by participating properties in the CID District.

Though the McPherson City Commission approved the policy to allow for financing of private development, the preference would be to use CID to pay for new public improvements.

CID is focused on new improvements and is not intended for existing public improvements (including streets and utilities) that need repairs or reconstruction.