City Council approves tax increment financing for building on Monroe Avenue

Andrew Paisley, Campus Reporter

The Charleston City Council approved $6,705 in tax increment financing funding for improvements to a building at 611-613 Monroe Ave. for the purpose of providing renovations to the building.

“Fili’s has been around Charleston for many years,” said Mayor Brandon Combs. “We just feel that this is the best solution for them and a good use of our TIF funding.”

Combs said the $6,705 in funding will only cover at least half of the total costs in renovations. The rest of the costs will be covered by money from the city.

“Several renovations need to be made at this business, in particular a new awning being constructed,” Combs said. “Fili’s is a popular business for local residents of Charleston, and we want to keep them happy and make sure the building is well kept.”

The city council also approved an ordinance that will establish regulations as part of the Charleston City Code for governing commercial solar energy gardening systems.

Companies with solar energy gardening systems, such as Cyprus Creek Renewables and Geronimo Energy, want to set up shop in the area.

The council approved the motion of allowing the companies to use two to 25 acres total for the solar energy gardens, with ten of these being conditional use for the resale of energy.

The city council also approved the renewal of an extension of a mowing contract with Scotty’s Lawn Care Inc., in Casey.

“There are few contractors in Charleston that are able to handle the multiple responsibilities the way that Scotty’s can,” Combs said.

Another extension approved by the city was an agreement with ABM Farms.

This extension involves a farm lease of 13.9 acres. The property from ABM is cash-rented at $150 per acre. This will include $200,000 in revenue per year.

A three-year lease agreement between the city and the Special Olympics of Coles County was approved at a cost of $2,408.52.

During the meeting, Combs appointed Marissa Grant to a three-year term on the Charleston Tree Council, Brendan Lynch to a three-year term on the Fire and Police Board of Commissioners and reappointed Bob Olson to a four-year term on the electrical commission.

Andrew Paisley can be reached at 581-2812 or at [email protected].