Village of Midlothian The mayor of Midlothian, IL was still digesting the financial ramifications of two car dealerships going under in the same month when he heard a presentation given by Hinshaw Consulting at the Illinois Municipal League's 2009 annual conference. The community of barely 15,000 residents had a finite amount of sales tax dollars coming in and the closings literally eliminated almost $800,000 annually. With no warning and no quick solution, the mayor and several elected officials approached Buckley with a simple question, with no simple answer - ‘What can we do?' With the economy in stagnation, Hinshaw was hired to determine the feasibility of implementing a Tax Increment Financing District around 147th and Cicero Avenues - the town's busiest retail corridor. A developer had approached the Village about the area, but with no incentive package available from the municipality, no progress was made. The vacancies from the defunct car dealerships resulted in an approximate 15-acre redevelopment opportunity. While it was determined that the area qualified for a TIF District designation, the impetus of the project quickly turned to finding not just a developer, but a tenant. Hinshaw identified two grocer operators that had interest in the high-traffic corner and began preliminary negotiations to determine which was the most viable. As the Village does not have an administrator or economic development department, Hinshaw's licensed real estate brokerage team led the interview process and determined that one of the grocers had both the interest and the ability to obtain financing for a 65,000sf store with accompanying retail. After several meetings between Hinshaw, Midlothian and the grocer, a comfortable level of commitment was reached regarding the availability of financial incentives from the Village once the TIF District is put in place. Although much work remains to be done, Hinshaw has provided the ‘light at the end of the tunnel' for Midlothian, and the grocer is eager to begin the negotiating process, enabling them to aim for a spring, 2011 ground breaking. Winnebago County, IL Comprehensive Financial Plan
Village of Midlothian
The mayor of Midlothian, IL was still digesting the financial ramifications of two car dealerships going under in the same month when he heard a presentation given by Hinshaw Consulting at the Illinois Municipal League's 2009 annual conference. The community of barely 15,000 residents had a finite amount of sales tax dollars coming in and the closings literally eliminated almost $800,000 annually. With no warning and no quick solution, the mayor and several elected officials approached Buckley with a simple question, with no simple answer - ‘What can we do?'
With the economy in stagnation, Hinshaw was hired to determine the feasibility of implementing a Tax Increment Financing District around 147th and Cicero Avenues - the town's busiest retail corridor. A developer had approached the Village about the area, but with no incentive package available from the municipality, no progress was made. The vacancies from the defunct car dealerships resulted in an approximate 15-acre redevelopment opportunity. While it was determined that the area qualified for a TIF District designation, the impetus of the project quickly turned to finding not just a developer, but a tenant.
Hinshaw identified two grocer operators that had interest in the high-traffic corner and began preliminary negotiations to determine which was the most viable. As the Village does not have an administrator or economic development department, Hinshaw's licensed real estate brokerage team led the interview process and determined that one of the grocers had both the interest and the ability to obtain financing for a 65,000sf store with accompanying retail.
After several meetings between Hinshaw, Midlothian and the grocer, a comfortable level of commitment was reached regarding the availability of financial incentives from the Village once the TIF District is put in place.
Although much work remains to be done, Hinshaw has provided the ‘light at the end of the tunnel' for Midlothian, and the grocer is eager to begin the negotiating process, enabling them to aim for a spring, 2011 ground breaking.
Winnebago County, IL Comprehensive Financial Plan
Our firm completed a Comprehensive Financial Plan for Winnebago County, Illinois. This plan will be used to implement the recommendations put forth in the County’s 2030 Land Resource Management Plan. The focus of the new Land Resource Management Plan is encouraging growth in areas close to municipal borders to allow the municipalities to provide services to development. However,circumstances will arise in which development will continue to occur in unincorporated areas of the County, and the County has requested our assistance to create a plan to deal with these developments. This process also includes a survey of other counties and the development fees they charge to determine the competitiveness of Winnebago County on a larger scale to attract development. Additionally, Hinshaw Consulting was involved in the drafting of the Unified Development Ordinance that is being prepared in conjunction with the 2030 Land Resource Management Plan. "Winnebago County's New Land Resource Management Plan Receives Honor Award"
Transit Oriented District Impacted by Economic Downturn
A flourishing suburban community that invested tens of millions of dollars in a new Transit Oriented District was suddenly faced with the loss of its developer and a project only partially underway. As the new village manager was just getting into the project, he attended a break-out session at the Illinois Municipal League's annual convention entitled "Negotiating with Developers". This session was lead by one of Hinshaw's principals, Paul Nicolosi. With the precipitous and dramatic economic downturn, the community was struggling to identify a new developer on optimal terms. The village retained our affiliated firm, Hinshaw & Culbertson LLP, who brought in Hinshaw as an additional resource.
Our first step was to identify the "Community Gap" - how much financial risk was the community facing and how much would it cost to get the project back on track? Next we needed to identify how this Community Gap could be "Bridged" - where was the money going to come from? Understanding these basics was the foundation for building a plan to help the community put the project back on track even in one of the worst economic downturns since 1929. The community had a highly skilled professional staff, so Hinshaw / Nicolosi stepped in as a member of its steering committee to augment staff where necessary and to bring creative, best practice solutions the firm had previously deployed on a wide range of projects. Ultimately, a complex financial sensitivity model was created that helped lead the discussion and gave the community's steering committee the ability to undertake "what if" scenarios and craft an optimal plan. A proactive approach that involved identifying national and regional developers that fit the project's profile was put in process. These developers were individually contacted by members of the steering committee and new interest in the project emerged.
Establishing TIF District to Promote Redevelopment
Hinshaw & Culbertson LLP and members of Hinshaw Consulting teamed to help the Village of Rockton attract, negotiate with and relocate a high tech employer to an area of its community that had been neglected for decades. The primary incentive tool used by the Village to achieve the rehabilitation and gentrification of the depressed area was a Tax Increment Financing District. The Village's goal was to provide a mechanism to finance public improvements that would help spur private investment and redevelopment in the dangerously blighted area. Qualifying the site for TIF helped to promote development and drive new economic expansion and job growth. Our team led the TIF implementation, provided economic analysis, and acted as lead negotiator with the developers of the property. We also negotiated with the taxing districts to achieve a Redevelopment Agreement that was a success for the entire region.
Corporate Headquarters Relocates to Superfund Site
Working as Tax Increment Financing (TIF) Consultants, the joint team of Hinshaw & Culbertson LLP and Hinshaw Consulting provided impact analysis, economic modeling, master planning, and legal services for the establishment of the TIF district boundaries and negotiations of the Redevelopment Agreement on behalf of the Village of Rockton. This site was heavily blighted in an otherwise quaint rural community. Many years earlier the site was classified as a Superfund Site by the U.S. EPA, the buildings on the site were in significant disrepair and the area was serviced by inadequate sanitary sewers. The community had an inquiry from one of the nation's largest manufacturers of industrial lubricants about relocating its headquarters to the site. This relocation would result in clean up of the site, renovation of the industrial buildings and construction of a new $35,000,000 office building. In addition, 500 new jobs with an average salary of $50,000 per year would be brought to the community. While this would have seemed to be the ideal development, many taxing districts and citizens had concerns and questions. As part of the process, Hinshaw launched an informational website, www.rocktontif.com, for the project, conducted open houses and attended meetings with the taxing bodies to provide as much accurate information about the project to the public as possible. Ultimately, the redevelopment agreement was negotiated and approved, and the TIF district formed. Rockton TIF Public Information Site
Rockford Park District Sports Complex
Hinshaw Consulting was the lead consultant for the Rockford Park District on a $30M economic development project that will include the largest indoor sports tournament complex in a 14 state region. The project is supported by local government in Winnebago County and will result in adding millions of dollars to their local economies.
A project 'Advisory Committee' was led by Hinshaw Consulting and consisted of Rockford Park District, City of Loves Park, City of Rockford, the Winnebago County Board Chairman and the Rockford Area Convention and Visitors Bureau. Hinshaw Consulting provided project management, master planning and economic development expertise to the team.
The nearly 15-month master plan and feasibility study resulted in a comprehensive evaluation of the region's existing sports tournament facilities, an assessment of the region's primary competitors, a master plan for enhancing the region's existing sports tournament facilities, and an economic analysis that ultimately concluded that the recommended plan would likely result in substantial revenue increases throughout the community as well as the creation of more than 250 new permanent full time jobs.
A communication roll-out plan was created that included meeting regional stakeholders and elected officials prior to public dissemination so that the team could evaluate more input and garner additional buy-in. The final stage of the roll-out plan culminated with media notification, a public presentation and the launch of a website dedicated to the project that contained the team's full report. The media covered the story fully and accurately and the project received a full endorsement from the newspaper's editorial board as well as community leaders. The project is now on to the next phase and construction is targeted to begin in the fall of 2012.
$25 Million Multi-Jurisdiction Public Works Project
Hinshaw & Culbertson LLP in collaboration with members of Hinshaw Consulting worked as the project manager and lead negotiator for the City of Loves Park on this $25 million public works project that included the construction of a new county highway, expansion of existing roads, improvements to a tollway interchange, and public utility improvements. The project was unique not only because it involved nearly 3,000 acres of property owned by dozens of individuals, but also because Hinshaw brought five public agencies together to collectively enhance and achieve our client's goals. The Illinois tollway authority contributed $10 million for bridge improvements and new exit ramps, the Park District contributed $2,000,000 for better access to its regional soccer facility, the County contributed $4,000,000 for county roadways, the non-sponsoring neighboring community contributed $2,000,000 for improvements to roadways adjoining its community, and private property owners, along with the City of Loves Park contributed the balance. The end result was that a $25,000,000 public works project was achieved for our client at a cost of $5,500,000 or 22% of the total cost.
"We couldn't have been more pleased with the outcome of you and your teams' efforts. Without the benefit of the experts in your company, I am sure we wouldn't have been able to carry out this complex $30,000,000 multi-agency project. Ijust wanted to express our City's gratitude for the tireless efforts of your entire team. Never once in the nearly three year process did you let us down." - Darryl Lindberg, Mayor, City of Loves Park, Illinois
"I would like to take this opportunity to formally thank you and your staff for a "job well done" on the East Riverside Transportation Improvement project. I was particularly impressed with your staff's management and coordination skills as exhibited in your ability to move this complex project forward in an environment that included multi-governmental and private sector collaboration. Your expertise in finance was evidenced in your ability to come up with creative financing solutions. Your firm's broad knowledge on all aspects of economic analysis provided us with the ability to secure the approval of our private sector partners. Thank you again for all of your efforts in the completion of this project and I look forward to working with you again in the future." - Joseph Vanderwerff, Winnebago County Engineer
$1.5 Billion Intermodal Facility Evaluation and Negotiations
Hinshaw & Culbertson LLP and Hinshaw Consulting were the lead consultants on a team of five professionals groups who represented the City of Wilmington Illinois. The consulting team also included the City Attorney, City Engineer and an outside Planning Firm. Wilmington was approached by a national developer to construct a $1.5 billion Intermodal Terminal Facility. While Nicolosi & Hinshaw took point on impact studies, economic analysis, project coordination and development agreement negotiations, the City's law firm, engineering firm and planning firm were part of a comprehensive team approach. The proposed facility was to sit on 1,700 acres of unincorporated land that would be serviced by the community upon annexation. The developer sought $120 million in economic assistance representing 100% of the TIF increment. Through the use of our impact studies and economic analysis, the community recognized that its long term cost to provide core municipal services (sewer, water, police, fire, schools and roads) would require $50 million. As a result of nearly two years of analysis and negotiations, the community ultimately refused to approve any deal that would not allow it to cover the impact costs to the community. Wilmington Intermodal Public Information Site
The developer began to negotiate with a neighboring community and our team launched a public relations campaign that included a website www.wilmingtonintermodal.com with information about the project, we also conducted public meetings to explain our findings and justify Wilmington's decision not to over-subsidize the project at the expense of its existing citizens. Our team provided comprehensive planning services to a community that was on the verge of major growth. The primary task was to help the community develop a comprehensive financial plan and to provide the guidance required for policy decisions regarding options for financing municipal infrastructure. To achieve this objective, members of our staff reviewed the community's code of ordinances, recommended updates and drafted modifications to reflect their recommendations.
"Just a quick note to say thank you for all the efforts you and the other team members from your office have put into our project. This is a very large project ($1,000,000,000) and we are a small community. While we want the economic growth, we are greatly concerned about how it will impact our community and what incentives we can and should provide. Having your urban planners help with the impact analysis and your municipal finance team work on the complex financial issues makes me and the council feel much more in control of the process. " - Sheryl L. Puracchio, Former City Administrator, City of Wilmington, Illinois
Local Government Acquisition of Electric & Gas Utility
Hinshaw & Culbertson LLP and Hinshaw Consulting are working collaboratively with a local Village who was presented with the opportunity to acquire its local electric agency. When the Village first became aware that the electric utility company servicing its community was putting its assets up for sale, members of Hinshaw helped the community evaluate and plan the acquisition opportunity. Working as a team, Hinshaw & Culbertson LLP and Hinshaw Consulting has assigned a Project Coordinator, identified experts in utility economics and engineering who could assess the quality of the assets. With a team that included a nationally recognized utility consulting firm, an engineering firm, and Hinshaw & Culbertson LLP, Hinshaw Consulting' Project coordinator began the evaluation process. After having become fully informed on the opportunity, the community unanimously passed a resolution to bring the nearly $30 million acquisition to a referendum vote. With the help Hinshaw communication professionals the referendum was approved by over 60% of voters. A contract for the purchase of the utility has been entered into and the Village continues to work towards the final closing. This acquisition will not only give the local community much needed revenue but it will also give it an additional economic incentive tool (favorable utility rates) to attract prospective employers to its community. It will also allow the community to keep the cost of electricity low for its citizens and provide better accountability in providing electric services.
"There has been much public scrutiny on the concept of purchasing an electric utility that services our community. Having your team acting as project coordinator and leading the due diligence process has helped us focus on the important issues with the community." - Dale Adams, Village President, Village of Rockton