From the State of the City speech by Mayor Francis Slay:
I strongly believe that we have to be prepared to provide incentives to spur development in our more challenging neighborhoods. If the private sector was going to invest in those neighborhoods without assistance, it already would have done so. We must find ways to jump start that development.
There are three specific ideas that, working together, will do just that.
First, I have made passage of state legislation to establish a tax credit to assemble land for new development in low-income neighborhoods one of our highest legislative priorities.
Such a credit would make it much more likely that neighborhoods that cannot attract new investment on their own will see the same new life that trendier neighborhoods are already enjoying.
Second, we have set aside nearly $2-million dollars in Community Development Block Grant funds to spur neighborhood development in challenged neighborhoods in north St. Louis. Now that elections are over and all of you are firmly seated, Barb [Geisman] will be working with you to see that these funds are put towards uses that have long-term impact.
Third, I intend to work with you and President Reed to continue to use tax increment financing to attract private investment to those City neighborhoods where it is most needed and where TIF will work. And he and I will oppose any blanket policy that seeks to ban or restrict residential TIFs.