Q A private developer has presented a proposal to the board regarding a potential development that is to include a community convention center. The developer is seeking reimbursement from the county for public infrastructure improvements and for construction of the community convention center under a TIF (Tax Increment Financing) plan authorized by Sections 21-45-1 et seq. The community convention center will remain the property of the developer or a nonprofit corporation, but will be accessible to the public. Are such reimbursements authorized from TIF bond proceeds?

A The Tax Increment Financing Act, Sections 21-45-1 et seq., authorizes municipalities and counties to issue bonds to fund redevelopment projects within their jurisdictions. The county is authorized to reimburse the developer from TIF bond proceeds for public infrastructure improvements (which will be dedicated to the county) in accordance with Sections 21-45-3(b) and 21-45-9. As to the convention center, Sections 17-3-1 et seq. authorize revenue bonds for construction of convention centers, but this does not include the issuance of TIF bonds under Sections 21-45-1 et seq., and does not enlarge the purposes for which TIF bonds may be issued. A county is not authorized to reimburse a developer from TIF bond proceeds for improvements that cannot be undertaken by the county under the authority found in the Act. (Attorney General Opinion to Ladner, September 13, 2013)