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Fresh green for grocer via reimbursement from village

Evergreen extends $1M to Pete’s Fresh

By Laura Bollin

Evergreen Park trustees voted unanimously last week to approve revising a redevelopment agreement, in the process giving a grocery store $1 million reimbursement for costs associated with expanding a commercial area on 95th Street.

The beneficiary of the decision is the owner of Pete’s Fresh Market, 3720 W. 95th St., which lies in the village’s tax increment financing (TIF) district.

Evergreen Park more than two years ago extended Pete’s a $750,000 developer incentive, said Evergreen Park finance director John Sawyers. A total of $400,000 went to real estate developer Peter Michael Realty upon the store’s completion in 2010, and the remaining $350,000 will be paid to Pete’s via shared sales tax revenues over the next 10 years or less, Sawyers explained. The amended agreement provides Pete’s $600,000 though sales tax reimbursements over the same 10-year period, and $400,000 to be paid before Sept. 1 as a reimbursement for the acquisition of property and expansion of a parking lot under construction.

“The $400,000 is a reimbursement for the commercial endeavor, as they had to acquire three parcels of property, Sawyers said. “A parking lot is being built out right now to the east of the property. It is a pretty sizeable parking lot (as many as 100 spaces).

“They invested another million dollars into that property through the acquisition of three buildings and the building of the parking lot. We are sharing in the benefits of the expansion of the lot, so we are sharing the sales tax revenue.”

The village receives revenue through sales tax paid on goods sold at Pete’s, and the village will return a percentage of those funds to the owner. Sawyers said the increase in the sales tax revenue agreement adds years onto the original incentive agreement.

“They were going to be paid off in about a year before this agreement,” Sawyers said.

Sawyers said Pete’s Fresh Market is one of the top 10 sales tax revenue generators for the village.

The 95th Street TIF district was established in November 2000, and extends along 95th Street roughly a block north and south from Pulaski Road to California Avenue. It is the only TIF district in Evergreen Park.

Sawyers said the businesses in the district yield $1.3 million in the village’s share of property tax revenues each year. Property tax dollars are used to pay off bonds used by the village to make improvements in the district, or can be extended by the village as incentives to business owners in the district.

“The money is used for maintenance of the TIF corridor, business incentives to bring new businesses to town, to buy parking areas, and overall enhancement of the TIF,” Sawyers said. “The whole purpose of it is to be successful. It is working as it should be.”