Keller City Council approves city's second tax reinvestment zone

The clock tower on Keller City Hall and a tree
City officials said they also expect participation in the TIRZ by Tarrant County and the Tarrant County College District. (Kira Lovell/Community Impact Newspaper)

City officials said they also expect participation in the TIRZ by Tarrant County and the Tarrant County College District. (Kira Lovell/Community Impact Newspaper)

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Keller's new tax increment reinvestment zone would run along the western edge of the city. (Courtesy city of Keller)
Keller City Council has designated an almost 800-acre area on the west side of the city that centers around Old Town as a tax increment reinvestment zone. The move, approved at the April 20 council meeting, will divert a portion of property tax in that area to pay for capital improvements through 2051.

Trent Petty of Petty & Associates gave a presentation to City Council Feb. 24 in which he explained that property tax revenues collected from the TIRZ will continue to flow into the city’s general fund. But any additional revenue above the current baseline will go to a capital improvements fund, he said. Once capital improvements in the area are complete, all property tax revenue in the area will return to the general fund.

Projections by Petty & Associates show that existing property values would increase by $102.9 million by the time the TIRZ ends in 2051, according to the final plan, while new value added to the area would reach $430 million. Those numbers are not adjusted for expected inflation.

This will be the city’s second TIRZ. A previous TIRZ existed around Keller Town Center, and that zone expired in 2018, according to city documents.

The tax code allows local governments to use ad valorem property taxes from a specific geographic area that has been designated a tax increment reinvestment zone to pay for capital improvements in that same area. The goal of those improvements is to make the area more desirable for private investment, according to the office of the Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts.

Categories of projects proposed to be covered by TIRZ funds include utility improvements, real estate acquisition, economic development grants and public art. The estimated cost for these projects is $129.2 million, according to Keller’s final project and finance plan.

Although the TIRZ has been approved by the city of Keller, it still must be approved by Tarrant County and the Tarrant County College District. Both entities also collect property tax revenues in the TIRZ and would contribute similar portions of their tax revenue to these capital projects under the proposal. Keller Economic Development Director Mary Meier said during the meeting that the proposal is expected to be considered by the county in May and by the college district in June.

Editor's note: This story has been updated to correct errors. A previous Keller TIRZ existed around Keller Town Center, and Mary Meier's official title is economic development director.
By Kira Lovell
Kira Lovell is a reporter covering Grapevine-Colleyville-Southlake and Keller-Roanoke-North Fort Worth. Before joining Community Impact, she majored in journalism at the University of Missouri and covered education and local arts for the Columbia Missourian and Vox Magazine.


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