Across Texas, over 1.3 million acres of property has been deemed “reinvestment zones,” offering tax abatements to the companies who develop the land by building homes or commercial buildings, etc. These tax abatements are offered by entities such as cities, counties, or special purpose districts in specific areas that they choose as TIRZ zones. (Source: 2018 Biennial Registries of Reinvestment Zones for Tax Abatements and Tax Increment Financing.)
These tax incentives were created for a purpose.
According to the Tax Code CHAPTER 312. PROPERTY REDEVELOPMENT AND TAX ABATEMENT ACT Sec. 312.202, the CRITERIA FOR REINVESTMENT ZONE:
(a) To be designated as a reinvestment zone under this subchapter, an area must:
(1) substantially arrest or impair the sound growth of the municipality creating the zone, retard the provision of housing accommodations, or constitute an economic or social liability and be a menace to the public health, safety, morals, or welfare in its present condition and use because of the presence of:
(A) a substantial number of substandard, slum, deteriorated, or deteriorating structures;
(B) the predominance of defective or inadequate sidewalks or streets;
(C) faulty size, adequacy, accessibility, or usefulness of lots;
(D) unsanitary or unsafe conditions;
(E) the deterioration of site or other improvements;
(F) tax or special assessment delinquency exceeding the fair value of the land;
(G) defective or unusual conditions of title;
(H) conditions that endanger life or property by fire or other cause; or
(I) any combination of these factors;
(2) be predominantly open and, because of obsolete platting, deterioration of structures or site improvements, or other factors, substantially impair or arrest the sound growth of the municipality;
(3) be in a federally assisted new community located in a home-rule municipality or in an area immediately adjacent to a federally assisted new community located in a home-rule municipality;
(4) be located entirely in an area that meets the requirements for federal assistance under Section 119 of the Housing and Community Development Act of 1974 (42 U.S.C. Section 5318);
(5) encompass signs, billboards, or other outdoor advertising structures designated by the governing body of the municipality for relocation, reconstruction, or removal for the purpose of enhancing the physical environment of the municipality, which the legislature declares to be a public purpose; or
(6) be reasonably likely as a result of the designation to contribute to the retention or expansion of primary employment or to attract major investment in the zone that would be a benefit to the property and that would contribute to the economic development of the municipality.
(b) For purposes of this section, a federally assisted new community is a federally assisted area:
(1) that has received or will receive assistance in the form of loan guarantees under Title X of the National Housing Act (12 U.S.C. Section 1749aa et seq.); and
(2) a portion of which has received grants under Section 107 of the Housing and Community Development Act of 1974 (42 U.S.C. Section 5307) made pursuant to the authority created by that section for grants in behalf of new communities assisted under Title VII of the Housing and Urban Development Act of 1970 or Title IV of the Housing and Urban Development Act of 1968 or in behalf of new community projects assisted under Title X of the National Housing Act (12 U.S.C. Section 1749aa et seq.).
Added by Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 191, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1987. Amended by Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 2, Sec. 14.09(a), eff. Aug. 28, 1989; Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 1106, Sec. 29, eff. Aug. 28, 1989.