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VOL. 116 | NO. 84 | Tuesday, April 30, 2002

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By JENNIFER MURLEY Board reviews PILOT program By JENNIFER MURLEY The Daily News A new payment-in-lieu-of-taxes program inching toward city council consideration is up for review at tomorrows monthly meeting of the city Health, Educational and Housing Facility Board. The meeting begins at 12 noon, at 65 Union Ave., Suite 1120. The PILOT program, which will be administered by HEHFB, is a financial incentive designed to encourage new construction and rehabilitation of affordable multi-family housing. The board hopes to build on momentum created by the ongoing public/private redevelopment of blighted communities such as Lemoyne Gardens and Hurt Village. Property tax freezes on approved projects within targeted areas in North and South Memphis, and the Binghampton area will be initially considered said John Baker, HEHFB executive director. However, Baker said the program would also be available for multi-family developments throughout the city. "Our first priority is to go where local dollars are already being put, and to try to get private dollars to follow those to help stabilize those neighborhoods," Baker said. The PILOT program will go before the full city council May 7, in anticipation of the HEHFB considering applications at its June 5 meeting, Baker said. Currently, between four and six "strong applicants" have expressed substantial interest in the program, he said. The deadline for PILOT applications to be considered at the June meeting is Wednesday. To meet basic eligibility requirements for the PILOT program, the value of the building renovations, site improvements or new construction must be equal to or greater than 50 percent of the total cost of the project. Approval involves a four-step application process, as well as a non-refundable $1,000 application fee and closing fees. In other matters, the board will ratify the recent sale of Hunters Trace Apartments by United Dominion Realty Trust to Fogelman Realty Acquisition Fund, LLC. The 192-unit East Memphis apartment complex was originally financed by the HEHFB, under the condition that 20 percent of the units be available to people living at 80 percent or below the local median income. Baker said the board would simply ensure the same affordability component would continue under the new ownership, which is composed of local affiliates from Memphis-based Fogelman Properties. "Our job is to just make sure people living at modest levels of income can live in these places and that it isnt encumbered in any way by Fogelman buying it," Baker said. "In fact, it has probably improved in some respects because theyre local folks and we feel like weve kind of got their ear when we need it."  

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