The city council will consider three major tax incentives to renovate and expand the Platte River Mall when the council meets tonight – Tuesday, May 4.

The meeting starts at 5:30 p.m. at the North Platte City Hall, 211 West Third. Council meetings are open for public attendance, or you can watch from your device. To link is on the city website, click Government, then City Council Agenda and Minutes, and then Livestream. The page is HERE.

The council will consider designating the mall property as an “enhanced employment area,” and allowing the owner to collect an extra 1.95 cents per dollar in sales taxes.

The owner has said he would use the anticipated income of about $7.5 million to finance a complete renovation of the parking lot and utility lines, and other phase 1 components of the $78 million project.

The council is thought to be divided on the special EEA tax, with at least two members – Ed Rieker and Donna Tryon – saying they cannot support more taxes. Brad Garrick, Pete Volz and Jim Nisley have indicated they will support the tax. Jim Carman and Mark Woods are thought to be undecided, swing votes. Councilman Ty Lucas has said he will abstain because his employer, Nebraskaland National Bank, has a financial interest in the mall redevelopment.

To authorize the EEA, the council must establish the EEA as part of the city’s occupation tax structure.  

Also, the council will consider a $1 million forgivable loan for the mall owners, provided they spend $30 million on the project. The owners’ representative, Mike Works, has said he would use to loan to make the appearance of the mall more attractive, with a complete, upscale facelift with more glass, metal and stone than malls that are in cities of similar size to North Platte.

And, the council will consider $8 million in tax increment financing – TIF — for the mall project.

Earlier in the meeting, the council will consider redeeming and refinancing several existing bonds to take advantage of lower interest rates and save money.

Also, the council will consider a new chipper truck for the electric department for $73,245. The Nebraska Truck Center submitted the bid, which was the lowest of four bids.  

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