Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

New Port Richey eyes funds for redevelopment

NEW PORT RICHEY — For the first time in years, the city is looking to use its Community Redevelopment Agency as something other than a debt service entity.

Recent years of budget cuts, re-financing, and paying down of debt — coupled with a rosier property value outlook — have shored up the CRA. Now city leaders want to use some of the money to drive redevelopment efforts next year.

At a meeting Tuesday, the city council learned they will have a little more than $2 million in revenue for the 2014-15 fiscal year. While much of that budget will still go toward paying down debt on city-owned properties such as the Hacienda Hotel, Economic Development Director Mario Iezzoni is proposing funding for some redevelopment efforts.

"For the first time in six years, the CRA is in pretty good shape," Iezzoni said.

One proposed slice would be a $300,000 allotment for economic incentives to improve the Marine district and downtown, where empty storefronts abound. The money would cover façade grants for existing property owners, help prospective business owners with moving expenses, and provide grants to encourage property owners to make use of upstairs space for residential use.

"In order for the downtown to really work, we need our residential base to grow," Iezzoni said.

Iezzoni also wants to use $50,000 in CRA funds on the city's burgeoning business incubator, which it launched in partnership with the Pasco Economic Development Council this year. Another proposal would devote $150,000 to marketing and infrastructure in support of Pasco County's Harbors Plan with an emphasis on promoting eco-tourism along the Cotee River, including paddle sports and lobbying state leaders to lift a restriction on scalloping in the area.

Council member Jeff Starkey said scalloping packs hotels and boat ramps in Hernando County where it is legal.

"It's been a tremendous economic boon there," he said.

New Port Richey eyes funds for redevelopment 08/21/14 [Last modified: Thursday, August 21, 2014 9:58am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Storm routs Cleveland


    TAMPA — Alvin Ray Jackson intercepted two passes, returning one for a touchdown, and recovered two fumbles as the Storm routed Cleveland 57-27 Saturday night in its home regular-season finale at Amalie Arena.

  2. Miscue sends Rays to another stinging loss to Rangers (w/video)

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — The Rays gave away DJ Kitty onesies Saturday night. Then they gave away the game.

    Rays centerfielder Mallex Smith misses a drive hit by Adrian Beltre with two outs in the sixth, allowing the tying runs to score. Beltre puts Texas ahead 4-3 when he scores after two wild pitches.
  3. Rowdies shut out Charleston


    ST. PETERSBURG — The Rowdies know a thing or two about stalemates, with five of their past 10 games ending in a draw.

    Rowdies in the first half during the game between Tampa Bay Rowdies and the Charleston Battery at Al Lang Field in St. Petersburg, Fla., on Saturday, Jul 22, 2017.
  4. 13-year-old Janessa's father holds memorial service at Rogers Middle School


    RIVERVIEW — About 100 people sat in the tile-floored multipurpose room Saturday at Rodgers Middle School where Janessa Shannon once sat as a student.

    A mourner embraces Nahshon Shannon after the memorial service for Nahshon’s daughter, Janessa, Saturday at Rodgers Middle School in Riverview.
  5. Trump: Aircraft carrier a symbol of America's might (w/video)


    NORFOLK, Va. — With praise and a blessing for the military, President Donald Trump helped hand over the USS Gerald R. Ford to the Navy on Saturday and said the state-of-the-art aircraft carrier will send a "100,000-ton message to the world" about America's military might when it is ultimately deployed.

    President Donald Trump commissions the USS Gerald R. Ford on Saturday in Norfolk, Va.