Economic development disclosure approved

Businesses will be required to disclose additional information before applying for certain local economic development programs under a bill passed by the Legislature March 24.

The provisions of LB1059, introduced by Bellevue Sen. Sue Crawford, apply to businesses seeking economic development incentives under the Local Municipal Economic Development Act or contracts using tax increment financing (TIF).

Before applying for special incentives, a business must certify:
• whether it has filed or intends to file an application to receive tax incentives under the Nebraska Advantage Act for the same project;
• whether such application includes or will include a refund of the municipality’s local option sales tax revenue; and
• whether such application has been approved.

The bill also includes provisions of two related bills.

LB860, originally introduced by Venango Sen. Dan Hughes, authorizes a municipality to use funds from a Local Municipal Economic Development plan for workforce housing. Currently funds from such plans may be used only for low- and moderate-income housing.

Originally introduced by Lincoln Sen. Matt Hansen, LB808 allows a municipality to amend an existing Local Municipal Economic Development plan to add or remove a qualifying business if its citizen advisory review committee recommends the removal. The provisions require a public hearing and a supermajority vote—two-thirds of members—of the municipality’s governing body.

The bill passed on a 44-1 vote.

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