By Emily Blaylock
President & Founder, Untamed Equity
I was grateful to be able to speak at the IEDC Conference in Oklahoma City in September. I know the title of my presentation “Monetizing Tax Increment Financing” doesn’t sound super exciting, but I was shocked to see over 145 attendees all smashed into the room to hear about it! Standing room only for this topic! Mainly, the focus of my presentation was to provide parameters for the Economic Development and Municipality representatives to understand some of the nuances of the development agreement language and how to make it more lender friendly to utilize TIF as a tool to get a project to the finish line.
I provided some real examples of 4 different types of TIF:
- Monetizing TIF grants
- Pay-As-You-Go TIF
- TIF notes
- TIF revenue obligation bonds.
I illustrated that although the developer will get funds upfront, the amount will not be equal to the full reimbursement from the municipality. By monetizing TIF everyone wins: the municipality doesn’t have to bond for the funds, the developer gets the money upfront, and the project gets built.
Oklahoma City does economic development right
This is the second time I’ve been to Oklahoma City and what a great example of economic development and planning. First of all the Oklahoma City Convention Center is a beautiful and amazing site for a conference with over 1500 attendees. Across from the convention center is the unique and beautiful Scissortail Park, which is the City’s newest urban area with gardens, lake activities, outdoor pavilion, and playgrounds.
One of the key sessions included the Mayor talking about the MAPS 4 program that was voted in a couple of years ago. MAPS 4 is a debt-free public improvement program which is funded by a temporary penny sales tax that will raise a projected $1.1 Billion over eight years ending in 2028. There are currently 16 projects slated to benefit from this sales tax increase of funds and includes items such as homelessness, senior wellness centers, innovation, and beautification. The session also highlighted the initiatives around driving development to focus on diversity, equity and inclusion. The City continues to identify unique partnering to accomplish these goals and growth.
A Different Perspective on Workforce Demands
Another focus of the conference was of course on the hot topic of workforce and how to continue to identify and connect with the ever-changing employment environment. One of the keynote speakers was Mark Perna who talked about the current state of the workforce and the generational gaps of motivation. He stressed that we often place a mandatory requirement that college education goes with every career and that doesn’t have to be the case. Technical jobs are necessary and it is a different type of hands on training required that we need to pay more attention to. There are plenty of different paths for a student to take to enter into the workforce that many employers have not considered.
By 2030, Mark stated, there would be a labor shortage of more than 85 million people which was shocking. One of the ways to combat that is to connect with the new generations by stressing their purpose in the job and providing more resources as well as tailoring to social and environmental responsibility. A second way is to tap into new talent pools which is outside of the traditional 4 year college degree and focus on the skillset you need as well as resources for training and development. He definitely gave the audience some things to think about for the future workforce.
Please contact us for more information on monetizing TIFs.
Emily Blaylock started Untamed Equity in 2022 after spending over 15 years in banking with a focus on Commercial Lending. Her most recent role was Chief Loan Officer for Northwest Bank & Trust Company in Davenport, IA. Emily earned her MBA at Indiana University. She lives in the Quad Cities with her husband and two children where she continues to cheer on the Hoosiers.