Our state representative, Justin Moed, has been working hard to make sure that if the new soccer stadium gets built in our area that we have a voice and that it leaves a positive impact on our area. Justin drafted and submitted Amendment #5 to HB 1273 that he offered on Monday to require the City and State to commit to make this bill about helping move our neighborhoods forward. On Tuesday the amendments he added to the bill were unanimously approved by the house. The amendments include:
1. Commitment from the City to establish a neighborhood revitalization district in the Old South Side – In the district the city will committ to spend $10 million toward neighborhood stabilization or development purposes withing 20 years of the Stadium project moving forward. Meaning they can bond against the committment and do it all at once or spend it over the course of the 20 year period. The City said one of the programs they would like to establish is a homeowner repair grant program but they would also like to make streetscape and infrastructure investments as well.
2. The State will designate the GM Stamping Plant and the neighborhood attached to it as the White River Revitalization District where $5 million from the development that occurs at GM will be captured into a fund for neighborhood stabilization projects in the neighborhood known as The Valley.
The author of the bill has committed to Justin Moed that they will work together to try and keep these elements in the bill if it makes it through the Senate.
Rep. Ed DeLaney from the north side of Indy is going to offer a provision to the bill stating that the owner of the soccer team must back up 50% of the bond payments if the stadium project were to fail. This amendment will go into the bill as well.
Justin believes his amendment and Rep. Ed DeLaney’s amendments will help ensure the bill has the votes it needs to get out of the House. If they are able to preserve the neighborhood development components, this could be a nice boost to the South and Southwest side of downtown.
Today, Wednesday, the bill will be up for final vote in the House. It would then head over to the Senate for debate, hearing and consideration. Then it will likely end up in a conference committee to work out the differences between the versions passed by the House and Senate.
It will be wise for us to begin building a coalition of support for the revitalization districts so we can advocate for the bill as amended.