Diverting tax money from the city general fund

It seems that the city is using Tax Increment Reinvestment Zones more and more as a way to finance private ventures.

The TIRZ allow any increase in property values and the resultant increase in taxes to be funneled into the TIRZ and away from the general fund.

Items 11.1, 11.2 and 11.3 on the Tuesday, March 3, 2020 city council agenda dealt with the expansion of existing TIRZs.

Item 11.1 added 595 acres to TIRZ six–Medical Center of the Americas.

Items 11.2 and 11.3 dealt with TIRZ thirteen.  They added more land and increased the amount that will be diverted from the general fund.

We deserve better



8 Responses to Diverting tax money from the city general fund

  1. JerryK says:

    And we wonder why our recyclable collection is being cut in half as tax revenue belonging to all of us is sequestered for the benefit if a few.


  2. No Surprise says:

    Well, duh!! That was pretty clear from the beginning. El Paso is developer heaven. Consider the impact of the TIRZ’s and then bake in the tax breaks and subsidies handed out to businesses like the Hunt WestStar tower and think about how much tax revenue is being lost or diverted for the personal benefit of a few. Those are all things that we have been told for years would help to generate more tax revenue to benefit the city as a whole. The charitable contributions made by the Hunts and Fosters are a drop in the bucket compared to what they are getting in return.


  3. archaic578 says:

    Every time I read this blog I see a lot of complaints and no action. Sad. In the Northeast, addition to TIRZ 13, is El Paso Municipal Management District NO. 1 – Texas-2019-HB4730-Enrolled.html
    The City agreed to this legislative action on Jan 8, 2019. It turns over 6,000 plus acres in the NE to a Board of Directors with all the powers of city government and no citizen oversight. The Montecillo Municipal Management District was the first in El Paso. Check it out and see what you think. Maybe you can explain it to me.


    • Sad cynic says:

      What action do you want to see? Some of us have been protesting for quite some time…writing op-eds…speaking at Council…investigating campaign funding…and, surprise! nothing happens! Take a look at the Knapp land – Council voted to preserve it, in June 2019. Nothing, repeat nothing, has been done since then to actually accomplish this. On we go. Or rather, down we go.


      • archaic578 says:

        Item 32.3 on March 17, 2020 El Paso City Council meeting asks for an update from staff on creation of the Knapp land conservation easement. ACTION you can take: either go and speak or send an email to the entire council expressing your point of view. This item was co-sponsored by Annello who made the original motion in June 2019, Svarzbein and Morgan. It helps to write to your council people and point out things that are languishing.


        • Still sad cynic! says:

          Just so you know…I have indeed written to Council and if I can get to the meeting I will. Hope the fear of the virus does not keep people away. TG for Annello!!


  4. Fed Up says:

    The entire concept of TIRZs is founded in greed and selfishness. The people behind the TIRZs believe that what’s theirs is theirs and what’s ours is theirs. Take the downtown TIRZ. Taxpayers citywide have been forced to help pay for downtown redevelopment for more than a decade and now we’re even being forced to subsidize the Hunt Weststar tower, but those who benefited from our money do not want their tax dollars being used to benefit the rest of the city. The thousands of acres of OUR land that the city sold to Foster for below market value will be the next TIRZ if it is not already.


    • elrichiboy says:

      That’s TIRZ 13, that’s being enlarged and extended for 50 years. 50 years! Imagine that. That land is now raw desert, and taxed as such. Wait till they put a gated community on it. That increase in tax values will only benefit the developers out there. (Well, the City will get 25% of the increase in property taxes out there. But the developers will retain 75% of the increase in property tax revenues, for neighborhood improvements.) What a deal! TIRZ 13 will benefit from all the public safety we all pay for. Their streets will be maintained. Perhaps most galling is that only 25% of the their increase in property taxes will go to debt service, that debt that the City incurred for all those other developer-friendly projects.

      In some cities, the philanthropists contribute to the community. Here, the community contributes to the philanthropists.


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