WEDA: Tax Incentives and Housing Solutions

WEDC: TIFS are Wisconsin’s Most Important Economic Tools.

OPPOSE: Assembly Bill 623 / Senate Bill 560

information provided by WEDA

The proposal is to significantly diminish the value of Tax Incremental Financing (TIF). The result would prevent key economic development projects across the state and put Wisconsin at a competitive disadvantage.

The TIF process is used to fund public infrastructure, redevelopment and other project costs necessary to incentive private investment that otherwise would not occur. The costs are paid off using future taxes collected on the TIF district’s increased property value. Taxpayers do not bear any new tax  burden. Rather the TIF ultimately creates a new tax base that benefits all taxpayers.


Since 1975, Tax Incremental Financing (TIF) has been the only consistently reliable financial incentive tool available for communities to promote economic growth, investment, and employment opportunities. It is a unique, but extremely effective funding tool utilized by municipalities to spur economic development that would not otherwise occur.


The bill would cap developer incentives to 20% of the total project cost of a TIF district (TID). Often times communities use TIF to reimburse developers for demolition, environmental remediation and other costs associated with blighted sites. 


Brownsfield and housing projects will not occur if TIF is reduced as an incentive.


La Crosse Area Development Corp. (LADCO): TIFs are successful locally

TID 13 – Kwik Trip

In 2006, this TID was created for Kwik Trip to expand their commissary and add over 100 employees. Taking advantage of the recently revised Wisconsin TIF statues allowing for mixed use TIDs, this TID also includes a large residential property. In 2009 this TID boundary was expanded to facilitate Kwik Trip bakery expansion, creating 100 more new jobs, and in 2012 the TID Project Plan was amended to facilitate Kwik Trip’s expansion of the Dairy Facility, Warehouse, and Bakery. Kwik Trip estimates that the company will invest $42 million in new expansions and upgrades between 2012-2014. 

TID 12 – Three Rivers Plaza

Created in 2005 this 20 acre site once housed a mix of mini warehouses, a vacant used car lot and building, a former lumber yard, etc. Redevelopment of this property now includes a grocery store, commercial center, hotel, condominiums and office buildings. Flood protection and a bicycle pedestrian train have also been implemented. In 2014, the City of La Crosse adopted a Master Redevelopment Plan for the Riverside North Site and the City is actively Implementing this plan.

TID 14 – Gundersen

Also created in 2006, this TID includes the entire Gundersen Health System La Crosse Campus, as well as a potion of the Powell-Poage Park, Hamilton School Neighborhood. AS a mixed use TID, past and future projects include a parking ramp, hotel, clinic improvements, and replacement of 100 housing units with newly constructed homes over the life of the TID.

TID 16 – Lot C Downtown

The goal of TID 17 is to assist with the redevelopment and revitalization of the downtown areas through various projects. The primary impetus for TID 17 is the new construction of a parking structure in the north downtown area, driven by the redevelopment of Lot C into Belle Square, as well as other redevelopment projects in the works.  

TID 15 – Chart

In 2013, this mixed-use TID was created to produce 100 new employees as the result of a $15 million industrial expansion by Chart Chemical, Inc. This TID includes several potential redevelopment areas along Mormon Coulee’s commercial strip, as well as targeted locations in two residential neighborhoods.


  • For every $1 in a Wisocnsin TIF district, an average of $4.66 of additional tax base is created
  • As of 2019, there were 1,320 active TIF districts in the state and over 425 communities have used the tool to create economic opportunities for thier citizens
  • Since its inception in Wisocnisn, TIF has increase property values in communities across the state by over $16 billion
  • Between 2009 and 2016, TIF districts that closed had been open for, on average, just over 16 yars, which is four to 11 years shorter than the maximum alllowed by law
  • Wisconsin is a national leader in using TIF for brad, effective economic development
  • Maintaining and enhancing current TIF flexibility allows Wisconsin communities to comete for proviate investment and job creation
  • TIF is not a tax break or a business handout, but rather a proven financial incentive that sparks developmentment and ulitimately reduces the property tax burden.

WEDA: Workforce Housing Initiatives

SUPPORT: WHDA Pilot Program AB 544 / SB 484

 More Info >>

SUPPORT: Local Workforce Housing Development Incentives

LRB-4317 includes several TIF-expanding incentives for projects involving workforce housing:

  • Increase the amount of residential development permitted in a TIF to 60% of the area (currently 35%)
  • Expand from one year to three years the length of time a community max extend a TIF for hte purpose of increasing the amount of workforce housing

SUPPORT: Workforce Housing Sales Tax Exemption

LRB-2128 would create a sales tax exemption for building materials, supplies and equipment purchased for the construction for workforce housing.

Defining Workforce Housing

Housing intended for intiial occupancy by individuals whose household income does not exceed 120% of the county’s gross median income or that costs the occupants no more than 30% of the county’s median income.

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