What is a CRA?

What is a CRA?

A Community Redevelopment Agency, or CRA, is a dependent special district in which a portion of future increases in property values are set aside to support economic development projects within that district.

Under Florida law (Chapter 163, Part III), local governments are able to designate areas as Community Redevelopment Areas when certain conditions exist. Since all the monies used in financing CRA activities are locally generated, CRAs are not overseen by the state, but redevelopment plans must be consistent with local government comprehensive plans.

Why a CRA?

A CRA helps to remove blight, prevents crime, creates clean and safe places, encourages economic development, enhances affordable housing, funds streetscape, preserves historic buildings, enhances parks and recreation, retains and recruits business, and increases the tax base of the CRA District.

What is a Redevelopment Plan?

The Community Redevelopment Plan is the Blueprint for CRA activities, which are funded by the increase in assessed values over time, called increment. (Note: CRAs are NOT funded by new taxes.) The publicly drafted master plan for redevelopment addresses unique customized needs of the specific CRA District. It sets goals, priorities, and identifies projects.

What is Tax Increment Financing?

Tax increment financing is a unique tool available to cities and counties for redevelopment activities. It is used to leverage public funds to promote private sector investment in the targeted area. The dollar value of all real property in the Community Redevelopment Area is determined as of a fixed date, also known as the “frozen value.” Taxing authorities, which contribute to the tax increment, continue to receive property tax revenues based on the frozen value. These frozen value revenues are available for general government purposes. However, a portion of tax revenues from increases in real property value, referred to as “increment,” are deposited into the Community Redevelopment Agency Trust Fund and dedicated to the redevelopment area.

Establishing a CRA

Step 1 – Finding of Necessity

Formally identify the blight conditions within the targeted area and establish the area boundary.

Step 2 – Community Redevelopment Plan

Develop and adopt the plan that addresses the unique needs of the targeted area and includes the overall goals for redevelopment in the area, as well as identifying specific projects

Step 3 – Redevelopment Trust Fund

Establishment of the Trust Fund enables the Community Redevelopment Agency to direct the increase in real property tax revenues back into the targeted area

For additional information, please visit The Florida Redevelopment Association