How Many Trees Can $80,000 in TIF Money Plant Around Your Election Center, Missoula?

by Travis Mateer

It seems like not a week goes by without a story about public TIF money being directed to one of a plethora of uses that stretch WAY beyond the idea of “blight” as defined by the state of Montana.

Since we’re going to be in Covid jails for the next 7 years (until you are finally coerced into taking the poke), and thus, presumably, voting by mail indefinitely, it’s especially galling to see TIF money go to ELECTION infrastructure. From the link:

Missoula County will continue making improvements to its newly acquired elections center on Russell Street, and it’s expected to request tax increment financing from the Missoula Redevelopment Agency next week to aid in the process.

In recent weeks, the county has approved three items related to the center’s renovations, including a request for roughly $670,000 in tax increment from MRA.

Of that funding, around $260,000 will go toward ADA improvements, $80,000 toward landscaping and $330,000 to make improvements to a second building located on the property.

Yes, you’re goddamn right the emphasis on EIGHTY THOUSAND DOLLARS FOR LANDSCAPING is mine. Because what the fuck? Is that the kind of mandate Engen’s MRA sycophants think they have from the Missoula voter?

It’s disgusting but not surprising that MORE than my two best years, financially speaking, in the non-profit sector, are going to plants and shrubs and shit.

Making the expenditure worse, this just adds to the maintenance that will have to be done, and that maintenance will justify some down department budget request for more money, or maybe a creative impact fee, or some other official sounding financial fuckery to extract money from people who can least afford it.

What can I say? Just another typical day in Zoom Town.

About Travis Mateer

I'm an artist and citizen journalist living and writing in Montana. You can contact me here: willskink at yahoo dot com
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