In Hollywood, actors and actresses are often told to “Hurry up and wait,” because they rush somewhere only to find out that nothing is happening and that the shooting of the scene is nowhere near starting.
But, when it comes to a long-dormant proposal for Guilford County to help High Point with its downtown development project, the opposite is true. High Point had to wait for three years – but now things are moving at lightning speed.
Several years ago, City of High Point leaders approached the Guilford County Board of Commissioners, asking for financial help in developing the downtown area around what’s now the ballpark where the High Point Rockers play baseball. At that time, the Guilford County commissioners didn’t approve a dime for the project – much less the $11 million-plus spread out over a decade that High Point wanted.
High Point officials argued three years ago that it wouldn’t really cost the county any money because High Point was asking for a percentage of the new “excess” tax revenue stream that would be created by property development and higher property values in the downtown zone around the stadium.
That request died a painful death three years ago. However, earlier this month, the Guilford County Board of Commissioners – a vastly different board than the one in power three years ago – held a work session, discussed the matter and voted to hold a public hearing on a new incentives package for downtown High Point.
On Tuesday, Feb. 9, the Guilford County Board of Commissioners announced a public hearing to be held at 5:30 p.m. on February 18 to consider an incentive for High Point. The meeting will be in the commissioners meeting room on the second floor of the Old Guilford County Court House at 301 W. Market St. in downtown Greensboro.
The incentive to be considered – up to $7 million distributed over a 20-year period – is smaller than the one on the table three years ago. The money would support ongoing development in High Point’s “Downtown Catalyst Influence Area.”
According to some estimates, the project is expected to generate up to $1.3 million in additional annual tax revenue and is expected to add 500 new jobs.
Due to the pandemic, the commissioners will receive public input over the web and phone lines at the meeting – and through written statements.
The Board of Commissioners will offer virtual participation for the first ten registered speakers. Those who wish to use these speaking slots can register on a first-come, first-served basis by submitting an email to firstname.lastname@example.org later than Wednesday, Feb. 17 at 1 p.m. (Virtual participation credentials will be provided to registered speakers.)
To watch or participate in the meeting, anyone can go to attendee.gotowebinar.com/register, complete the webinar registration, select the “Join Webinar” option prior to the meeting start time and choose one of the following audio options:
(1) Use your computer, tablet or smartphone’s speakers (ensure you have an internal/external microphone), or
(2) Select the “Use Telephone” option after joining the webinar, and then call in using the following telephone number: 1 (877) 309-2074 and enter access code 882-881-520 at the prompt.
Written statements can be mailed to:
Guilford County Clerk to Board
301 W. Market Street
Greensboro, NC 27401
Comments can also be emailed to email@example.com.