Back in March, we sent you an email about why we support the proposed tax incentives for the McPherson Hospital project. When the matter came before them at their March meeting, Durham County Commissioners agreed to delay voting on tax incentives for Concord Hospitality's McPherson Hospital project. They will now be voting on the issue at their meeting on Monday, June 3rd. Because the vote was delayed, we still need your help! Please contact the county commissioners and ask them to vote for the tax incentives. Keep reading to find out why we support the incentives, contact information for the county commissioners, and a sample email.
What is the developer asking for and why?
The developer is asking the City and County to extend incentives that would save Concord $2 million in taxes once the hotel becomes operational. The City has verbally agreed to grant $1.25 million leaving a balance of $755,000 for the County.
County Finance Director George Quick projects it would take less than four years for the County to begin recouping the incentives based on his estimate of approximately $200,000 in new annual tax revenue from the hotel (it is $24,300 now as an idle lot). Concord is asking for the tax incentives to meet the return on investment its investors and lenders require to finance the project. The return would be a reasonable one, in line with fair business calculations.
Preservation Durham supports granting tax incentives for the project for the following reasons:
- It will result in substantially increased property tax revenues
- New occupancy and sales tax revenue will be generated
- McPherson hospital's historic fa�ade will be saved
- 30 full time jobs will be created in a location that is easily accessible to workers
- Durham will be able to attract larger conventions with these needed hotel rooms
- The building will be LEED certified (silver) and shows a high level of commitment to the environment by the developer
- The approved design and site plan is attractive and more than compatible with the surrounding residential and commercial area
- The payback for the request is short compared to other approved public-private partnerships
- It revitalizes a gateway site on the main East-West corridor linking Duke and Downtown
Who else is in favor of the incentives?
- Downtown Durham Inc
- Durham Convention Center Authority
- Ninth Street Merchants Association
- Recently retired DDI CEO Bill Kalkhof
- Trinity Park Neighborhood Association
How can you help?
County Commissioners need to hear from as many voices as possible that Durham needs this project. Please encourage your neighbors, coworkers and contacts to attend the council meeting June 3rd at 9:00 a.m. to stand in support of the project. Emails and phone calls are also very important in the week running up to the meeting. Please contact our County Commissioners and respectfully voice your support of the project. Their information is provided below:
Fred Foster, Jr., Chairman
Brenda Howerton, Vice-Chairman
Wendy Jacobs, Commissioner
Michael D. Page, Commissioner
Ellen W. Reckhow, Commissioner
My name is [Your name], and I reside at [your address]. I'm writing you in regards to the proposed tax incentive plan for the redevelopment of McPherson Hospital. Granting the tax incentives will help to create new jobs, increase property tax revenues, and revitalize a blighted corner.
This proposed project is easily within walking distance of the downtown convention center and is an important part downtown Durham's long term economic development. I ask that you please vote in favor of granting the tax incentives to Concord Hospitality for this project.