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CITY: Blanket ERA ‘makes sense’

September 30, 2013

COLUMBIA CITY — Columbia City's Common Council is ready to take the next steps in placing a blanket Economic Revitalization Area within the city limits, just as the Whitley County Council has done in the county.

Several council members at last week's meeting agreed the designation "makes sense."

Currently, there are several small ERAs throughout the city, and every time a company wants to apply for a tax abatement, a process of public hearings and council appearances have to take place before the company can even apply for the abatement.

If a blanket ERA is put in place, it would be a one-time process for all involved.

"This way, we make the decision once and the whole city is ready to go," Columbia City Mayor Ryan Daniel said.

Whitley County Economic Development Corporation President Alan Tio said the county has had success with the program.

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