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Local

Batavia School Board approves rebate for expansion of outlet mall

BATAVIA – Batavia School Board members Tuesday unanimously voted to rebate $3.2 million of future property taxes to the Chicago Premium Outlets mall in Aurora to help pay for the mall’s expansion.

“This agreement provides us most importantly with an assurance on our assessed valuation for the next 21 years, which gives us great financial stability for our property tax base,” Kris Monn, the Batavia School District 101 assistant superintendent for finance, told school board members.

The agreement with the city of Aurora will allow for the mall’s owners, Simon Property Group, to expand the mall by approximately 290,000 square feet. The mall, when expanded, will have 250 stores, said David Hulseberg, president and CEO of the Seize the Future Development Foundation in Aurora.

“I look at the agreement as an insurance policy for the school district,” Hulseberg told school board members. “We’re also encouraging economic development for the region.”

The agreement covers only the part of the expansion that lies within what was formerly known as Aurora Tax Increment Financing District 2, estimated to be 47 percent of the expansion. Once the partial rebate reaches a total of $3.2 million or goes on for 10 years, whichever occurs first, the Batavia School District is expected to receive an additional $923,000 a year in property taxes based on current levels, Monn told school board members.

In addition, Monn said 10 percent of all taxes generated by the expansion are exempt from the rebate.

“This means that we will still retain over $150,000 each year in new operating revenues until our share of the rebate agreement is fulfilled,” Monn said.

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