Commissioners announce proposal to benefit Austintown Racino - News weather sports for Youngstown-Warren Ohio

Commissioners announce proposal to benefit Austintown Racino

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AUSTINTOWN, Ohio - Mahoning County Commissioners have announced a proposal designed to increase the benefit of new tax dollars from the Hollywood Gaming Casino and Racetrack.

The proposal came as commissioners were given a progress update on the project.

A representative for Penn-National Gaming provided the county with a power-point update on the racino's construction, along with new visuals of what it will look like upon completion.

The county wants to maximize the benefit of projects tax dollars by creating what is called a TIF district, which stands for Tax Increment Financing; a public financing method to use future gains in taxes to subsidize current community improvements.

Commissioners say the TIF will designate 50 percent of future taxes to the county over a ten-year period, which would amount to more than $6 million.

"If we take 20 percent matching funds and the TIF District creates $6 million, that comes back to the county. We take that and we can parlay that into $30 million," says Mahoning County Commissioner Dave Ditzler.

The projects would focus on roads and infrastructure improvements.

"Redoing Merridian Road from end to end, both resurfacing, sewers; storm sewers, sanitary sewers, these are huge benefits to our Valley," says Ditzler.

The county engineer says the plan would be a boost for needed improvements.

"That enables us to do some larger projects more frequently and faster than we normally would," says Mahoning County Engineer Patrick Ginnetti.

Commissioners say the TIF district proposal will be on their agenda for a vote next week.


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