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52 Comments

  1. 1

    Oren Davis

    Both of these entities need to stop acting like babies and get in the room and talk. And Doraville HAS asked repeatedly to present to the School Board but they won’t let them do it. This could be a real good thing or a real bad thing for Doraville and the region. Playing tit for tat does nothing good for either side.

  2. 2

    Bill Lowe

    If only the school board could guarantee that there would be better schools after investing heavily in the county infrastructure, there would be a long line of people wanting to invest in DeKalb County and would cheerfully donate their future higher taxes to the effort.

    But, no.

  3. 3

    Skeptical

    If I were asking for $100’s of millions I would answer the school board’s questions.

    It is the same reason Trump won’t release his tax returns.

    They don’t want to answer the questions.

    What projects are ready to go. How have they been funded. What is the timing of the development? Who is gonna loan them the money on the TAD bonds? Show a commitment. What equity has Integral raised?

    Smoke and mirrors. All they got is BS.

  4. 4

    Casey

    Intregal Group will soon be involved in getting 15 million for infrastructure at the Brookhaven Marta Station Development.

  5. 5

    from TIG website

    Letter from the Chairman

    At The Integral Group LLC (“Integral”), we are fortunate to have had a number of outstanding clients and partners that have
    played a key role in our growth and development since the Company was formed in 1993. Complementing those clients and partners is a team of committed associates that are intensely focused on achieving pre-eminence in the quality of the customer experience that we provide.

    The unique path that we have traveled to arrive at this place, at this time, has made us stronger than many of our competitors. We are appreciative of, and grateful for, our good fortune. We recognize that our most critical assets, our human resources, walk in and out of our various offices every day. Thus, we are fiercely committed to investing in helping all of our associates be the best that they can be in all respects. We are certain that those investments will pay untold future dividends for the company in ways that we cannot predict at this time.

    In addition to our commitment to providing a high quality customer experience, we aspire to never lose sight of our obligation to 1) play a meaningful part in making the communities in which we do business better off as a result of our presence and 2) provide solid returns to our shareholders and investors. We accomplish the former by creating and maintaining an organizational culture that puts the need to serve others above all else. We accomplish the latter by remaining true to our mission and adhering to our core values, while delivering services of the highest quality to our clients and customers.

    Our desire to be a company that leaves lasting positive impacts in our communities has helped us to set the stage for better performance in the areas of urban revitalization, infill development, smart growth, and public/private partnerships. Because of that, I am confident that we have all been a part of laying the foundation for building an enterprise that will be relevant for decades to come. Accordingly, I want to thank all of you that have had a hand in helping Integral to be the well regarded and forward looking company that it is today.

    I welcome the opportunity to continue on more of this journey with you.

    Sincerely,

    Egbert L. J. Perry
    Chairman and Chief Executive Officer

  6. 6

    Check Them Out

    These guys are small time players getting ready to set Doraville and DeKalb for a screwing and never say thank you. Who is going to pay? You, if you live in DeKalb.

  7. 7

    Really I mean Really

    Yeah, once I saw the two car dealerships go in, I thought something was fishy with this development. This goes against the whole walkability of the development.

  8. 8

    RAJ

    Special thanks, Trey,for your great work on this almost endless story. Your readers, and others who cannot be identified, contributed some great technical info …..a benzine “plume” underground near the auto dealership? Wish you could archive all the stories with comments on one page so we could take a look at them.

  9. 9

    Eddie E.

    Why is it that developers pretend not to comprehend the meaning of NO!!

    Go to the bank and borrow the money like any other speculator.

  10. 10

    Tom Doolittle

    That’s what it is RAJ–just a “story” when you think about it. There IS no issue per se except what’s in the media–it is one party that has asked for a meeting to explain what is essentially a sole source proposal (a vendor if you will). School systems don’t contract with developers on projects in TADs. (They contract with cities–and only if they decide its good for THEM–not the city).

    To contract with a city, it would review (due diligence) its entire file to make sure as a partner the city knows what it’s doing. I don’t know whether the school system has any opinion about Doraville, except from an immediate reaction to its size and process. The process in this case was NOT to include DCSD in its formulation of the TAD, which any school system would would have stopped any TAD related to the GM project at the GM site border–and insisted the outrageously expensive “covered street” to find more appropriate transportation funding–as did the City of Atlanta find DOT finding for the17th ST bridge (and use TAD for a small match).

    BUT–the city decided it would be better to leave DCSD out of the process and push it out until the end to coerce school system publicly. Miscalculation obviously, given a new school board and new superintendent–with a recent history of being attacked by the Atlanta establishment (and media).

    Also, note the school system has no “position” per se on the GM project and no policy on TADs. They’ve never really thought about because the law doesn’t require it. They have published an OPINION about TADs.

    All of this would have been made clear if the media had put the issue into perspective. Before 2008, the school system would have done this as a matter of course–because school systems didn’t have to vote if they wanted one. After 2008, school systems actually have to take the political risk of taking a vote (only if they want to participate tho, not if they don’t). They have done this IF they view a TAD to be a better opportunity than cost–and they think participating in TAD is necessary to get a project done. They don’t do it to “revitalize”.

    Without Doraville’s PR campaign, aided by the The Atlanta Growth Machine, you’d never have even heard about it–just as you wouldn’t if some contractor had sent a letter with a sole source “idea” for them to consider.

  11. 11

    Resevelopment Powers 101

    Incredible article, Post. Bravo.

    If Intergral was asking for $293M from a Private Equity partner, they’d have to not only deliver the documentation, but meet with their private equity benefactor monthly to explain process.

    Financial accountability comes from constant review and strict underwriting standards. In effect, the role of ‘conduit’, or debt issuing municipality, for financing via a TAD transaction becomes a bank underwriting function. The DCSD would be placed in the role of unsecured BUT SENIOR debt provider and deserve the role of equity partner. The article indicates DCSD is already receiving legal and billable Mergers and Acquisitions counsel.

    The school district is a commitment by us all. They need pension reform and several other improvements, but as long as Ben Frankin’s statements are honored, the education of the nations children are our responsibility. Do we deserve better schools, higher grades and school options? Of course, we’re America. 33rd in the world sucks.

    The DCSD lawyers have taken their natural role as advisor to a financial ‘transaction’. Then they’ll have to hire underwriters and bond salesman. And their commitment to children gets smaller and their commitment to underwriting gets bigger…save hiring more staff….that has to be supported…and retained….in a development authority office…that turns into a wing.

    So, yes, any consideration of this funding takes financial institutions out of the regulated role of banks, puts it in the hands of untrained academic professionals, guided by debt instruments that aren’t registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission like most other debt. All this to forego their own legally provided tax digest increase and put taxpayers at risk during an unlikely but possible bond default. What about the unfair tax (and bank interest) advantage given to TAD restaurants, apartment providers and car dealership. What? Car dealerships.

  12. 12

    Doraville Assembly YES!

    Oh ye of nay say. Doraville’s Development Authority approved $1.5 BILLION in bond inducements last week. We will get our Development by hook or crook!

  13. 13

    Tom Doolittle

    Nay Say reminds us of an important distinction–and the TAD shows the need to be discriminating–which the media has not assisted with. I’ve mentioned this before. I have seen few DeKalb taxpayers object to the Assembly project. There are few naysayers about extending the town, hopefully developing economically and enhancing transportation systems with this serendipitous location. (with what we know about the GM site so far).
    Sure, the Assembly project is speculative, but that is Doraville taxpayers concern, not DeKalb’s.

    So there are few NAYSAYERS about Assembly.

    What skepticism we HAVE witnessed where concern is articulated carefully about the choice of a TAD (with no evidence that alternative financing methods were reviewed and pros and cons shown in public) by one small city. Under the law, the city has the opportunity to foist such a decision onto jurisdictions that are more than 70 times its size. So obviously the people in that jurisdiction MIGHT not buy into is the desire to what Doraville has articulated as “reinventing the city”.

    DeKalb taxpayers may want something done on the GM site–they sounded interested in the idea of a proven mixed use concept with actual and known interest from the private sector in 2010. They may not want to pay for what amounts to 30% of a public financing vehicle for one infratructure project (a covered street) that will transport very few DeKalb users or even regional traffic in which DOT should have to express the project’s cost effectiveness.

    What DeKalb taxpayers may not “feel the love” (ownership) for is taking on the challenges of righting a town that has had no effective leadership in decades and was fat and happy with GM there–and doing nothing progressive for itself. The evidence that we see today was there well before GM downscaled.

    DeKalb taxpayers might for instance “do the GM site” if a TAD was restricted to the GM site and a plan was announced for funds to come from somewhere else (many places) as a strategy to:
    (1) “reinvent” a city
    (2) have non-DeKalb jurisdictions do projects that are regional assets

  14. 14

    Tom Doolittle

    Powers 101–not sure if you are saying DCSD will write and sell its own bonds. It won’t–all bonds will be Doraville’s. Tiny Town would never come close to being able to write this level of debt if GO bonds, not TAD bonds, which are rated “junk” and at no taxpayer risk. The “only” limit on TAD bonds (whether large or small city) is whether county and school systems participate AND a state limit on the “First” or “next” TAD (TIF really) of 10% of the real estate value in the city.

    However, one place your point is apt is the wierd notion that a county (and school system) if so desire, can ride the coattails of a tiny town’s bond mechanism–thereby having no accountability. And on the other hand, to a jursisdiction that ISN’T interested where a small city can FOIST a big issue on a large jurisdiction and coerce it into playing by virtue of public (er…media) pressure.

    That is downright strange–and really shows how The Atlanta Way is very real as a nearly ETHEREAL belief system. There is no tangible explanation for the phenomenon.

  15. 15

    Doraville Assembly YES!

    Meh. Once Assembly is built you will there just like the rest of us Mr. Do Little. We don’t need school money. Doraville is strong enough to sustain this and we will! People are lining up to give us free money. Great for the city with a touch of country. Love it.

  16. 16

    Doraville Assembly YES!

    The school system is afraid Mr Perry will prove them wrong. That’s why they won’t let them speak

  17. 17

    ART

    Wow. Integral admits there is NO private partner wanting to develop in Doraville?

    What else is Integral trying to hide here?

    How will they be able to do the Brookhaven project when this one is such a mess??

  18. 18

    ART

    Doraville/integral appears to be asking for small meetings with school board member in order to avoid the open public meetings requirements.

    The integral refusal to provide WRITTEN documentation is rather telling here. They may not have done their own due diligence or they do not want the public to know how shaky their deal really is. Maybe both?

  19. 19

    Check Them Out

    Tim Lee might be available soon to consult and school Egbert Perry in how to get this deal done for his company.

  20. 20

    Tom Doolittle

    exactly! you don’t need school money. Looking forward very much to Assembly–always been a fan of the concept.
    Thanks.

  21. 21

    Tom Doolittle

    Hey Yes–what precisely will be proven wrong–about Assembly. The school system has no opinion of Assembly. If you mean the TAD, there isn’t anything to prove. A TAD is a TAD and school system isn’t taking proposals from cities right now. The media has been stroked and has made no attempt at helping people distinguish one from the other or provide information about the status of TIF for school systems in GA or the rest of the US. The People are at a disadvantage without the education.

  22. 22

    Enviro

    If the development is successful without school funding, it will prove that school funding was never necessary in the first place. If redevelopment can be done without taking funding from the school system, it should be. School systems should not be involved in real estate speculation, and there’s no sensible reason they should be. Good ideas should have no problem attracting investment.

  23. 23

    Ellen

    If Doraville taxpayers want to do this by themselves without DCSD $. Let them go ahead and issue bonds serviced only by Doraville taxpayers. Just keep your hands out of county and school coffers. By the way, there is no way I would ever buy those bonds!

  24. 24

    Resevelopment Powers 101

    Unrated revenue bunds that classify as junk based on their likelihood of default isn’t taxpayer risks? Here we go.

  25. 25

    inhock?

    Hey Yes–You mean the prospect of $1.5 billion. You can’t have a $1.5 billion inducement with no project and little property value.

    I want to get this right. Can you point to a link which shows the final agreement? I only found one with blanks. Secondly, can you explain the derivation of $1.5 billion?

  26. 26

    Troy Hester

    This has turned into the most convoluted story I have ever heard! Can anyone tell us why the Dekalb County School Board will not hear a public presentation from the City and Developers? There is more to this story than is being told.

  27. 27

    Tom Doolittle

    That’s the city’s position, not mine. It’s justification for such high numbers–“free money”. Its’ the economic development ethos’ point of view based on their claim that “no TAD has ever failed”.

    (I will say this–I’m surprised at what Doraville Assembly Yes is saying about $1.5 billion in revenue bonds–represents future property value of GM site alone–not the whole TAD (area) which remains in place.)

    That’s about $30 million in tax abatements over the life of the buildout–IF county and school millage is included. Remarkable that other jurisdictions can be roped in without DeKalb’s finance authority signing on officially.

    School superintendent says school interpretation is future money is a “cost” and liability exists, reputational risk, bond rating destruction all would cause cities to cover the “noncovered’ bonds.

  28. 28

    Troy Hester

    Nearly if not ALL developments have a risk. No risk, no reward.

  29. 29

    Tom Doolittle

    ART–I think the letter says small meetings have already taken place. Developer wants the big meeting, specifically TO BE PUBLIC (it has to be if a quorum of board members is present).

    The public meeting is intended to put public pressure on the board to actually hold a vote and be held accountable–possibly getting members to change their tune. Of course, that is precisely what board members NEVER want–regardless of being in favor or opposed.

    In this case of a speculative GM project and a TAD (totally different issues, where no one seems to contemplate how important the distinction is) where school system has no control of piggy bank ATM that can divert funds to non-essential infrastructure and put things like new government buildings and downtown infratructure–this is a no win situation for a board member.

    Any board member who is willing to roll dice on what is no better than a 20-80 proposition is not concerned about his reputation even if incumbents always win reelections. Also the jury won’t be out until about three-tenures down the road. Also someone can always say the propoerty value di in fact go up whether proposed development of $2.1 billion never shows up and only $200 million does.

  30. 30

    Tom Doolittle

    But DeKalb school system doesn’t do private sector development–no project, no risk–not looking for financial reward.

  31. 31

    Tom Doolittle

    They don’t want to vote. A presentation puts pressure on actually making a formal decision. Like all decisions, whether voting yes or no, you can lose politically. Electd officials would be just fine with never having to take a stance on anything that they can’t absolutely predict.

    The entire “game” for Perry is to put public pressure based on his presumed position as Atlanta favored son. They think he walks on water–or at least it serves then to prop him up. Looks like that has been a miscalculation with DCSD not having to decide anything–or even take a proposal.

  32. 32

    Enuff Govt Already

    School boards should be concerned with educating children and NOT with TADs or other development “opportunities”. If the GM property was such a great deal then private money will sign on to the project. Second thought, if this was such hot development opportunity then why would a multi-billion dollar company like GM unload the property?
    The DeKalb School board should pass on this and so should DeKalb County. The legislature gave Doraville a huge swath of commercial property through legislative annexation. No property or business owners requested annexation. That unwanted legislative annexation raised the Doraville property tax digest to $427 million. If the trainwreck of govt that is Doraville wants a new downtown then Doraville should go it alone!

  33. 33

    Eddie E.

    I wish I could like that one 2 or 3 times!

  34. 34

    Eddie E.

    Are they a bank open for business to lend?

  35. 35

    Eddie E.

    ‘Again’ would suggest it happened before.
    What is the example of why the County Schools should be on the hook for any of this nonsense?

  36. 36

    David

    No, banks won’t touch it. DeKalb Co. democrats desperately need someone that knows the in’s and out’s of government financed development.

    That’s one of many inherent problems with Development Authority Law. Developers don’t compete for a project. An insider is hand selected. He knows where to put the sacks of cash, the maintenance contracts to family members and lie to the public without being called on it. He wants to go to the County Commission and tell them to their face, ‘I know where the skeletons are hidden. I am running out of money. MARTA TOD in Brookhaven needs more money. If you don’t dont do this for me, I’m busted. Our minority owned business enterprise will be shown as the sham that it is and I’m telling the AJC where the skeletons are buried.’

  37. 37

    RAJ

    As we well know, these projects are never allowed to fail. A taxpayer “bailout” always awaits!

  38. 38

    Tom Doolittle

    Atl Biz Chron today: with report about “Plan B”.
    In the letter above, DCSD asked if “Doraville” (Integral?) had considered options other than a TAD that required school funds. So here:

    http://www.bizjournals.com/atlanta/news/2016/07/01/plan-b-eyed-for-doraville-s-gm-site.html?ana=e_ph_prem&u=%2FgIJW1fZNmscdBK2mlP2TQ0c1bf7d9&t=1467375521&j=74506732

    “We are putting the pieces in place that will allow us to pursue a Plan B,” said Eric Pinckney, Integral’s vice president of development who is in charge of the $1.6 billion Assembly project.

    “On June 22, the State Road and Tollway Authority awarded the Doraville Assembly project a $1.5 million grant and a $1.5 million loan so it could begin to design the most critical piece – the Park Avenue covered street that would go underneath the railroad and MARTA tracks.”

  39. 39

    Tom Doolittle

    …and this from AJC–interesting mentions the Doraville “tax breaks”, but not “abatement” or “inducement”. Biz Chron didn’t mention Doraville bonds at all. Obviously, ABC is just reporting what Integral gives it–AJC seems to making an effort to be precise. Now needs to understand the CID better.

    From AJC:
    “Doraville’s development authority last week discussed a separate bond structure that could offer long-term city, county and potentially school tax breaks. Another potential option might be creation of a community improvement district, a different type of self-taxing district for commercial property owners that uses additional taxes to finance infrastructure improvements in the district.”

    http://www.myajc.com/news/news/local-govt-politics/gm-site-developer-may-try-plan-b-for-public-fundin/nrqdp/

  40. 40

    David

    All of those structures are different stripes of the same cat. DCSD gets the shaft. The more confusion the better. Taxpayers stop asking questions when the smoke gets too heavy.

    Also, CID districts aren’t what they are advertised either. They say the PCID paid for the AD overpass. They paid 1.5% of the costs.

  41. 41

    Tom Doolittle

    Games–
    More needs to be said about the Doraville CID with only one taxpaying land owner–gotta be a first. GM site is Tail wagging dog in so many ways. Get someone to say “interested”, so that “interest” can be leveraged to someone else.

    Example:
    TAD was based on “conditional approval” (meant nothing if DCSD doesn’t get it). BUT on Sept 21, 2015, school system wasn’t most important crisis. All that mattered was Integral taking the “conditional approval” to its private sector lender as a pseudo “letter of credit” for loan extension. Live to fight another day. Phew–that was a close one.

    CID:
    So now we need to show the POSSIBILITY of revenue any way we can. Just the POSSIBILITY will gain favors from people who use other people’s money. In this case government-giving grant makers. All you need is your fraction to produce matching grants (20-80).

    A one-private property owner CID? No precedent. This will legislative creativity, faciltitation and accommodation at its finest. CID revenue? About $50,000 annual at current $30 million property value. US 78 Evergreen CID started cheapest in history at $200,000.

    Is DOT handing infrastructure grant to “Assembly CID”( Integral) the same as handing to PCID (Hines or State Farm)? Don’t think so.

    Of course–all CIDs leverage their millage (fees) for grants. Difference is as multi-owner organizations: (1) they had reasonable revenue with many trustees; (2) they started the CIDs to provide on-site management services, trash pick up, security, flowers at entrance.–grant-making was with surplus. That’s why the fee revenue are considered operating budgets, not asset multipliers (for matching awards).

    Worse, cynical arguably a shell game–worth Government Accounting Standards (GACS) looking at it. As a one payer CID member, Integral can put a profit-sector payment for itself into non-profit CID, turning non-matchable bucks into matchable; apply for non-profit or govt grants.
    Very shrewd, but city needs to be creative.

    What about city? Too close to one developer driving the truck (as in “back up the truck” or “firetruck with fire drill”, we’ll see). Tapes show the CID was actually initiated by the city, not a private property owner–very questionable. Where can trouble come from–noone knows–cutting new ground.

    Thin edge–all can go well–but on a precipice–and doesn’t appear that having more and different grant-makers is lowering risk. When it goes, it goes for all.

    Epitome of pain? Razors edge, no? We slide down but what do we use for breaks? Hint: Girls don’t have them.

  42. 42

    RAJ

    OK…OK! This was EXTRA special legislation(bill #)first single property owner CID in Georgia but plenty of others else where,but is the property tax exempt or abated or what? One mill revenue per year could be used for match money as a CID, but single property owner pays the tax; good deal if the grant match is right and large enough to be worth something other than chump change!

  43. 43

    Eddie E.

    After this fiasco is over, does everyone (not in the rapacious development business) see why it is time to get the General Assembly off their butts and OUTLAW TADS?

  44. 44

    Tom Doolittle

    Eddie–what makes this fiasco the event that would shake a lawmaker into erasing TAD legislation? Why would they do this after THIS particular TAD was formed? Note–there has been no tax increment financed thus far and the only one there would be at this point would be Doraville’s millage, no one else’s. It’s Doraville govt and Doraville taxpayers problem.

    I could see outlawing TADs by never having allowed them in the first place; outlawing them after 2008 meltdown; outlawing school funding after the 2008 Supreme Court decision. But since they never did those things, I don’t see that anything has happened of any consequence here. Maybe if one of the project’s in the TAD blew up (remember, GM site only represents the first project–the issue isn’t about that–its the TAD that’s the problem)–maybe then say DoraTAD was stupid because it was for so much TIF for such a tiny inexperienced burg. But as of right now, no reason for legislators to act.

    I go back to my first comment–there is nothing here but a MEDIA CONSTRUCT where the school system is concerned. It’s not an issue until DCSD says it is. It’s just an ignored sole source proposal from a city that has no standing with education decision-makers.

    BTW–would you have any problem with Doraville raising $60 million with a TAD that has no county or DCSD millage? It would do its first $43 million bond package just the same as it has scheduled in the redevelopment plan. It could pay for some traditional infrastructure (and streets) and use the rest to leverage grants from elsewhere. There may actually be a way for the county to abate county and school millage (to an extent) on top of Doraville doing a city-only TAD.

  45. 45

    Eddie E.

    Tom,
    I stick with simplicity.
    School Budgets are not Banks and rapacious developers are not school systems.

    Why should the twain meet?

  46. 46

    Tom Doolittle

    So you mean the legislature should get rid schools being in TADs, not TADs. Six states have made that choice. You’d have to make a case about TADs not being responsible–and even incentives in general for any lawmaker to outlaw TADs.
    In fact, you’d have to make a case that government should be in the economic development business.

    There’s a role for a local govt with economic development interests to provide a reason for developers to clean up a contaminated site or a blighted one. But the “infrastructure” would have something to do with the cleanup and liability asociated with it–then “pipes” and “wires”–maybe some other things if its located out of the way.

    Today’s TADs are now essentially building the projects–and in some cases, not even building things that are involved in the projects, just by virtue of being located in TADs. The TADs are used to build municpal faciltiies and city infrastructure. It’s gone crazy.

    So you’re basically saying their out of control and trying to control or reel them in wont be possible, so the only answer is to scrap the whole thing. Either that or you’re making a Libertarian argument that none of this is the role of government philosophically.

    By the way–the way the TAD people (Growth lobby) gets away with rationalizing giving away the treasury is by saying “we like to keep things simple” and all of these distinctions are so much bother. I prefer to take the approach that everything these assholes do is challengeable in court and you need to build an argument.

  47. 47

    Eddie E.

    First and foremost, I would like to see the use of EDUCATION funds sequestered from speculative development whether for environmental remediation, infrastructure installation or any other non-educational purpose. It’s bad enough that our General Assembly has systematically robbed our education budget to the tune of 8.5 billion dollars since 2003, it is abhorrent to put the remaining dollars generated from local property taxes at risk on a (very potentially) losing bet. I would hope course corrections could be made in Georgia BEFORE we face the disasters that caused California to finally outlaw the process.

    As to reel-in or scrap, my concern is that now a portion of our local elected ‘leadership’ is applying pressure to the DCSD to abrogate their responsibility to the taxpayers and education customers in order to satisfy the whim of speculative developers.

    I agree that much of what is occurring at this site and around much of North Dekalb and across the border in Fulton county needs to face a court challenge so that at least more clear adherence to the obligation of elected leadership can be defined.

  48. 48

    Tom Doolittle

    Local elected leadership. Probably even worse is the recruitment of the Atlanta Way Growth civic leadership. Why does that have a say in what happens in Doraville with Dekalb taxes. Effectively the media has been coopted because it refuses to find equal and opposite voices from the rest of Georgia and the US that will provide views about education funds in TIF. There are only two people with an opposing viewpoint–DeKalb’s school leaders. Obviously, there uncountable people who can be found with no compunction about using DeKalb’s school funds for what they consider a necessaryl REGIONAL asset.

    To me, you find public interest groups and people from California and states that outlawed education fund use first. Second, if you MUST quote REGIONAL voices advocating 100% funding from one county–then you ask about REGIONAL funding.

    Third you ask why a TAD should be fully funded when only the GM site is the supposed REGIONAL need. (WTF from Atlanta should care if Doraville is “reinvented” and Buford Highway and Shalowford get to teardown their presumed “blighted” commercial development and apartments).

    This of course is now beginning to happen because DCSS said no.

  49. 49

    Tom Doolittle

    BizJournal Saporta has most succinct description of what the developer calls “Plan B”. The article has weaknesses that are better covered by the AJC’s article, but this statement is most useful for the average reader.

    From the article:
    “Plan B” would include a combination of government grants and loans as well as the creation of the Assembly Community Improvement District, which has already been approved by the City of Doraville.”

    Note, it is not the CITY GOVT’s Plan B, it is Integral’s–YET it replaces what must be inferred now as “Plan A”–which was a one-stop-shop plan sourced by the city itself, Doraville TAD’s TIF. This is a meaningful shift in leadership and sponsorship. Finally becoming clear that the PROGRAM (TAD), not only the PROJECT (Assembly), is NOT and never has been run bt the city–it has been dominated and spoken for by a developer.

  50. 50

    Melanie

    The Post reported on the Plan B a month and a half ago. Glad to see others are finally catching up. https://brookhavenpost.co/doraville-passes-plan-b-for-gm-plant-redevelopment-funding/40595/

  51. 51

    Tom Doolittle

    From the AJC article:
    “Doraville’s development authority last week discussed a separate bond structure that could offer long-term city, county and potentially school tax breaks.” The article did in fact mention an “abatement” in an earlier paragraph.

    However, the article didn’t mention that the crux of the “discussion” were the detailed proposed separate draft Bond Resolutions and Letters of Intent/Inducements for:

    (1) Doraville Sixty LLC, The GM site–Assembly and Assembly North and The Yards; (2) Studio Sixty, LLC, 6-acre, Third Rail Studios and (3) Atlanta Real Estate Holdings (20 Acres, Car Dealerships.

    Those can be found here:
    http://doravillecityga.iqm2.com/Citizens/FileOpen.aspx?Type=1&ID=1180&Inline=True

    These would effectively form the tax abatements, which result from a development authority (Doraville’s Downtown Authority) taking ownership of the properties for the purpose of leasing the properties back to the developers. Ownership by the development authority, a non-profit corporation renders the properties tax exempt.

    It isn’t clear to me–or obviously the media whether a city development authority’s bonds would involve abating the COUNTY’s or COUNTY School system’s millage.

  52. 52

    Tom Doolittle

    Melanie–that was a timely pick up by Post on May 17. It related to the first action taken by Doraville–the CID.

    Apparently, as written about in AJC and ABC last week, Plan B has now morphed into something that would actually put real money on the table. That would be the tax abatements I posted. Who knows whether they will come about though.
    Basically, Plan B will always be in place and will continue “Morphing”–as the number of bonds increase over time–as parcels are sold and overall property values rise. There is an unlimited number of bond packages allowed for in the draft Letter of Intent for the GM site abatement (only one of three mentioned above).

    Without any property value of any real sense (cents?), the only way a CID can produce infrastructure $ on the order of tens of millions is to find Federal Grants–and those require at least 25% matches, either county or local along with the CID match. The grants have been hard to come by.

    Maybe the Post will do an update with the detail that AJC and ABC don’t seem interested in.

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