Warren County’s Downtown Economic Development Authority hopes to have state tax revenue rolling into the Tax Increment Financing District this summer.

The money will come after the state certifies that at least $150 million was spent developing the 49-block area since the TIF was established in 2008.

“We have spent about $174 million, so we are way over the $150 million mark,” said Doug Gorman, chairman of the authority.

Gorman has provided the state with information about the expenses for months, but only recently learned that the state needs an official outside auditor to certify that expenses were made. “I think it is a learning process for everyone,” Gorman said.

The only major state-certified TIF project is Louisville’s KFC Yum! Center, a single-building project. The TIF here has 26 projects within its boundary.

“They (the state) want to verify before they send out any funds, that all the t’s are crossed and i’s dotted,” Gorman said. “We have to estimate what the TIF revenue should be and they have to verify the amount. They put all of that work on the TIF and then they double-check our work. If they agree, they will send us a summary and eventually a check.”

Byron Fisher of Baldwin Associates of Kentucky is reviewing all expenses and should have it completed in about three weeks. He is going to look at every expense at $500,000 and above, probably a little more than 40 invoices.

“We are hoping to get certified by July 1,” Gorman said, noting that is when loans on

certain projects have payments due.

“The TIF has been waiting five years for revenue to start coming in to continue to do things,” Gorman said. “It’s not the end of the world if we don’t make that deadline, but it will make arriving at our projections for projects a lot easier.”

The TIF actually has until 2014 to reach its signature $150 million investment level. The sales tax on construction materials and a portion of payroll tax returns to the district to reimburse what has been spent and is used to further develop the area.

Meanwhile, work is continuing on the wrap of the parking garage adjacent to the Bowling Green Ballpark.

“There are about 90 workers on-site, finishing the fit up of Hitcents and Connected Nation,” said David Butler, the project manager for Glasgow-based Alliance Corp. “We still are pushing for a June 28 opening (for Hitcents).”

In another week or so, the brick should be complete. The siding was delivered this morning to complete the facade of the wrap that overlooks the ballpark and Seventh Avenue.

— Robyn L. Minor covers business, environment, transportation and other issues for the Daily News. Follow her at twitter.com/bowserminor or visit bgdailynews.com.


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