a non-partisan website about Loveland politics for residents concerned about our community's
quality of life - email us your editorial or report on Loveland topics for posting here
|2006 LURA Audit
"The sales tax increment has not generated any
revenue for LURA to date due to declining sales tax
revenue within the project area (downtown)."
READ THE REPORT
Urban Retail Sprawl Helps Downtown?
|Chad McWhinney explains to the audience
at the Chilson Center during his
"get-the-facts" campaign that downtown
business sales have increased sales by 37%
Loveland, September 22, 2007
After failing to obtain City Council approval for a taxpayer funded trolley for their
proposed Grand Station, McWhinney has embarked on an aggressive public
relations campaign to convince Loveland residents of the benefits in subsidizing
McWhinney projects through future taxes.
During two community forums and a presentation made to the Loveland City Council
last August, Chad McWhinney was peppered with questions regarding the impact of
his growing publicly subsidized sprawl near I-25 has on downtown Loveland. His
arguments ignored facts regarding a declining sales tax revenue in downtown while
instead relying on false assertions his organization uses regularly in their public
Chad McWhinney has stated that downtown Loveland retail sales are up as a result of
his developments near I-25. Anecdotally, he mentioned eating at the Chop House
recently in downtown and said their business was up 37% alongwith other businesses
downtown Loveland. In other forums he offered the "fact" that downtown Loveland
revenue has only grown steadily since he began developing Centerra.
According to the Loveland Urban Renewal Authority (LURA) 2006 status report and
audit downtown has been lossing ground since 2002. This report was provided to
the Loveland City Council who also serve as the directors of the LURA.
The offical report states, "The sales tax increment has not generated any revenue for
LURA to date due to declining sales tax revenue within the project area [downtown]."
The report goes on to explain how sales dropped precipitously in downtown Loveland
in 2003 and 2004. While slightly up in 2005 and 2006, downtown Loveland sales
have not recovered to the 2002 levels and remain low.
In 2002, the total sales tax revenue collected in downtown Loveland was $1,280,250.
By 2004 the downtown sales tax revenue was $1,196,900, down $83,350 or 6.5%.
This is very significant since Loveland's population grew considerably during this
same period yet sales tax revenues for downtown decreased and remain well below
the $1,280,250 level it reached in 2002.
In responding to another question during their presentation to the community last
month regarding impacts to downtown Loveland the newly proposed Grand Station
might create, Rocky Scott (McWhinney employee) stated that in every community they
studied the downtown businesses experienced an increase in sales when newer
"upscale" shopping experiences were created in the town. He didn't offer any reason
why Loveland, the city where McWhinney is developing the most, was not included.