The board authorized Superintendent Devin Padavil to enter into an economic development agreement for Project Colin and to utilize the law firm O’Hanlon & Associates to help negotiate proceedings, Padavil told Community Impact Newspaper.
TSD Public Information Officer Tim Crow declined to provide to Community Impact Newspaper how large of a limitation was approved nor how long it would last or who it was from as the project name does not belong to an existing business. The approval of this application for Project Colin does not indicate an effective value limitation as it will need to receive final approval from the Texas comptroller’s office.
The state's Tax Code Chapter 313 value limitations allow businesses to enter into agreements with school districts to limit how much property taxes they pay for a set amount of time. The applicant agrees to build or install on a property and create jobs in exchange for this limitation.
Community Impact Newspaper obtained this information from the district, but was unable to obtain a recording of the meeting as “the feed cut off unintentionally,” Padavil said.
The deal to limit appraised value on qualified property is similar to action Del Valle ISD took just over a year ago, when the school district in southeast Travis County voted to limit the appraised value of a potential Tesla gigafactory to $80 million for at least 10 years, creating a tax incentive for the company of about $46.7 million.
Many companies have been eyeing Austin and its suburbs for expansion and development, including Apple, Visa and Amazon, which did not select the city for its HQ2 project in 2018.
Most recently, Samsung Semiconductor sought a 100% tax abatement for 20 years as incentive to bring its 6.1 million-square-foot chipmaking plant to the area. That facility would have come with a $17 billion investment—$6 billion in structure and other real estate developments and $11 billion worth of personal property in machinery and equipment.
Community Impact Newspaper reported Jan. 28 the project would have been among the largest single economic investments in Texas history and the largest single investment in the Austin area, easily surpassing recent billion-dollar projects such as the Tesla gigafactory in 2020 and the Apple campus in 2018.
Community Impact Newspaper will continue to follow this story as it develops.
Brian Rash contributed to this report.