Introduces greater certainty, transparency into project evaluation
Brian Coddington, Communications Director, 509.625.6740
Monday, July 27, 2015 at 1:51 p.m.
The City of Spokane announced a new Economic Investment Program that introduces greater certainty and transparency into how the City evaluates large project proposals.
The Economic Investment Program framework has been developed over several months by a working group comprised of Mayor David Condon, city staff and members of the City Council including Council President Ben Stuckart and Councilmembers Amber Waldref and Mike Allen. The group discussed areas where new commercial and industrial development are most important, and inventoried the resources available to those willing to invest in the community and, by extension, Spokane’s citizens.
“Economic investment is good for Spokane and something citizens have told us that city government needs to encourage,” Condon said. “The Investment Program keeps the City accountable to the citizens we serve and gives us a solid tool to pursue investments that create jobs that deliver new economic opportunities and improve our median household income.”
The program applies to investments of more than $5 million and considers five core areas: incremental property, sales and utility tax revenue; job creation; public benefit; industry cluster advancement; and investment in geographic priority areas. Points are assigned in each area to arrive at an overall score. Job creation, public benefit and new revenue are the most heavily weighted because those categories define the return on citizen investment.
“The Economic Investment Program is something Spokane has needed for some time and will be a great tool as we encourage and attract new investment in Spokane and the new employment opportunities those investments bring,” Stuckart said.
Implementing the plan requires a series of updates by the City Council over the next several weeks with the expectation that the Economic Investment Program will be implemented in September.