Economic Development and Tax Abatement

The City has received many excellent questions about economic development and tax abatement. We use our economic development program to spur growth in our city - we are the government in this region charged with protecting the economic vitality and job in Hazelwood.  

  • Our economic development program is funded through a dedicated 1/2 cent sales tax. The money raised through this sales tax can ONLY by used for economic development purposes. We can use the money to provide loans to companies to help them locate to the city or expand their current facility in exchange for a promise of a certain amount of jobs with a target average salary. The loans are secured, meaning we receive the money back if the borrower defaults.
  • Tax abatements, such as TIFs (tax increment financing) and TDDs (transportation development district), are used to offset some of the non-normal costs of developments, like roads, bridges, sewer lines and utilities. The St. Louis Outlet Mall would not have been built without the large entrances off MO-370 and bridges over the highway. These were paid for with TDD revenues that came from sales on the mall property. City taxpayers did not pay for those improvements.

Who receives tax abatement?

  • We use the "but for" test: But for this tax abatement, this project would not happen. Without those tax abatements, a project would not be built and NO revenue would have come in to the City. The City and other taxing districts forego revenue in the near future to gain more revenue in later years. 
    • It is important to note, the City of Hazelwood does not pay any money to developers as part of tax abatements.
  • We also take into consideration the potential for future revenue and job growth, as well as the other revenues such as sales taxes, utility taxes, business licenses, and more that do not get abated. 

The City did offer full tax abatement in the late 2000’s to try to spur new development after the Ford plant closed. The effort worked.

  • Aviator Business Park - where the Ford plant used to be, now has 5 buildings and with 3 more buildings being planned.
  • Hazelwood Logistics Center -  has 8 buildings, all fully leased.
  • Hazelwood TradePort - currently has 2 buildings built with 2 more are planned in the next 12 months. 9 buildings will be added to the City’s industrial base when the project is completed.
  • Park 370 – 3 new buildings planned.
  • McDonnell and Byassee – the new industrial building is almost completed
  • The old SuperValu building on Hazelwood Ave is being repurposed into a business that makes and repairs pallets.
  • Village Square -  undergoing a full renovation
  • Elm Grove TIF - where the K-Mart used to be, was fully renovated and has a new hotel, international food market, and storage areas.
  • Pershall Business Campus - Green Street is constructing a new building at 8930 Pershall Road, helping to redevelop that portion of Hazelwood.

As the City’s economic development efforts have started to succeed, the City has reduced its tax abatements.

  • Hazelwood Logistics Center has an 18-year tax abatement, eight of which are only 50%.
  • Hazelwood TradePort and the building at McDonnell and Byassee only have a partial tax abatement.  

Lastly, fire districts are exempt from tax abatement for any projects that start after 2015. The City requires any developer to repay the City for any taxes the City pays to the Robertson or Florissant Valley Fire Districts. The City continues to consider each economic development project to determine the appropriate incentive, if any, as good stewards of the taxpayers’ money.