By Max Bowenemail@example.com
A nine-year Tax Incremental Financing [TIF] agreement between the town and H1 Lincoln—doing business as Majestic Honda—has been approved.
The agreement was originally approved at the 2017 Town Meeting, but a legal dispute over an alleged contract violation caused it to fall through. That matter has since been settled, and the dealership, based in Lincoln, R.I., will soon relocate to North Attleborough. The agreement calls for a 50 percent reduction in property taxes in the first year, decreasing by 5 percent each year following. The town has three other existing TIF agreements.
It’s estimated that once the facility is up and running, the town will receive $122,000 annually in property taxes. Currently, it only generates $71,000. During the life of the TIF, the town will receive nearly $1 million in taxes.
The agreement only applies to the increase that the facility will bring, not the total taxes and so the reduction will be approximately $25,000 in the first year. The company will construct a $10.5 million facility on a parcel on 849, 855, and 865 S. Washington St., a vacant car dealership at the end of Draper that connects to Route 1.
“It’s a good fit for the property,” said Town Councilor Justin Pare, who also heads the Finance Subcommittee. “It’s been vacant for 13 years.”
Town Manager Michael Borg said the facility would have 65 employees, 43 of which would be relocated from Lincoln. Over time, the total employment is expected to rise to 75. Councilor Julie Boyce voted against this at the 2017 Town Meeting, and said that with the town also debating an override back then, it was not the time to be providing tax breaks.
“I’m all for bringing businesses here,” she said. “If we can get businesses to come here and stay here, our community would definitely benefit. I hate to see the town asking for an override when we can give TIFs.”
Councilor John Simmons said this would also benefit other businesses, as the Majestic Honda employees would likely frequent them. Council President Keith Lapointe said it was a good fit with the surrounding area.
“Getting a state of the art facility is a great idea,” he said. “The town already committed to this, what does it say if we back out?”