The Gretna City Council on Tuesday unanimously approved the Nebraska Crossing Redevelopment Plan after the project received a favorable cost-benefit analysis by a University of Nebraska at Omaha economist.
The vote paves the way for Gretna to offer the project's developers $57 million in incentives.
But before the incentives can be offered, city officials must write a detailed agreement spelling out the mall developers' financial, construction and marketing responsibilities. Once the agreement is completed, the council must vote on it.
If the agreement is approved, the city can offer developers Rod Yates of Arizona's OTB Destination and Frank Krejci of Omaha, Nebraska Crossing majority owner, a package of city incentives. They include:
» $12.8 million in tax-increment financing, which uses part of the future property taxes from a development to help pay for financing.
» Up to $14.3 million in turn-back sales tax incentives, which would return 1.5 percent in local sales taxes for 10 years within the redevelopment area. State law allows cities to divert the city's portion of the sales tax, up to 1.5 percent, for qualified redevelopment projects.
» Up to $26.2 million from an occupation tax on businesses in the development, a 1.95 percent charge on sales for up to 25 years.
The incentives are in addition to the city's direct investment in the project, $4.1 million in general obligation bonds, which would be repaid through property taxes.
If developers do not meet specific goals in the Nebraska Crossing agreement, the city would not be financially responsible for their financial shortfalls.
Yates has said that when completed, the $112 million outlet mall at the intersection of Interstate 80 and Nebraska Highways 6 and 31 should have more than 60 tenants. Earlier this year, Yates and Krejci of Omaha's Century Development said they had 25 committed tenants.
Economist Kenneth Kriz, who prepared the independent analysis, said the project could return $6 to $10 for every $1 of lost revenue and expenses to the City of Gretna. “Its benefits to the city are obvious,” Kriz said.
Mayor Jim Timmerman said he hoped an agreement would be ready within 30 days for the council to review and vote on.
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