Four of the six Brookville Redevelopment Commission members on hand for Monday's meeting weren't affiliated with the board when it last met in December. Beyond president Todd Thackery – he was reelected to same – and nonvoting representative of the school board, Beth Foster, there were plenty of new faces from various backgrounds.

Brookville Town Council approved the appointments of Thackery and Victoria Meyer while new BTC president Bridget Hayes – in attendance Monday – had appointed John Estridge, John Rudisell and Rita Seig. 

Rudisell, originally of St. Leon, has military service to his credit and runs a tree/stump grinding and landscaping business currently. Estridge has recently embarked on retirement after editing the local newspaper for decades. Seig is owner of Seig Surveying, West Harrison, and wife of current Franklin County surveyor Rob Seig. Meyer has an MBA and has worked in finance with Hill-Rom, as well as in purchasing with other firms around the state. 

Thackery is in architectural design professionally and Foster was a longtime educator in FC schools, also serving in several other civic capacities. 
Upon being sworn in, the new members were addressed by Hayes.

“I thank you all for accepting the nomination and saying you want to help Brookville,” she said. “This group is very important, I like to have different people, and I think you guys are going to be a great group.”

Also elected to office were Seig as vice-president and Rudisell as secretary.

The meat of the meeting was to review all past and current items on the agenda. Nothing was pressing, but the BRC Annual Report presented in December needs to be uploaded to Indiana Gateway/Department of Local Government Finance and BTC by April 15.

Updates on funds saw the Lawrenceburg Grant Fund 4500 still sitting at $76,231.21 and the TIF (Tax Increment Financing) Fund 4445 now at $355,921.22 and growing. Thackery gave a brief outline on the TIF commercial boundaries, which primarily includes Main Street but also extends to Owens Corning, Cobblestone Inn and past the car wash on the south end of town. 

Disbursements originate to the TIF fund from the county treasurer's office twice per year after the property tax draws, Thackery explained. He gave the May 2022 disbursement as $162,084.56 and November's as $119,396. 

Hayes pointed out that the town reaps exponentially more from their TIF district than does the county on its Golden Road TIF managed by FC Redevelopment Commission. “So, we should be doing projects and projects to spend this, right?” she queried.

The board advised that projects sometimes take many years to come to fruition. 

Development discussed included the south end storm sewer infrastructure; phase two will cost about $500,000. Thackery noted the funds aren't available, but neither is there imminent development planned that requires the upgraded system. 

As for residential TIF creation, the process is paused. Thackery said the next step would be to define the boundaries and get legal assistance to approve all parcels within.

Hayes asked why the commission would entertain a residential TIF area. Thackery said, traditionally, TIFs are for commercial use but at some point, Indiana passed a statute to create residential TIFs because the Indiana Economic Development Corporation realized there can be no economic development if there's no population development (workers, etc.). 

He also raised the possibility of bonding the TIF district(s). “My understanding is TIF proceeds can have bonds sold against anticipated revenues, but then there's a 25-year window until the TIF expires,” he added. 

At no additional cost to the town, some subgrade sidewalk settlement on Fairfield Avenue near Riverfront Apartments is set to be corrected when warmer weather hits.

A Riverfront Development District is in place surrounding Main Street; this allows for easier access to alcohol permits for existing or new establishments. As asides, Hayes noted the restaurant at Valley House Flats could open as soon as spring and Korner's Kountry Kitchen is on the market after shuttering.

In historic preservation discussion, Thackery said the Brookville Façade Grant Program was temporarily paused due to potential overlap with PreservINg Main Street improvements. He explained a $10,000 matching grant from BRC can be attained for exterior upgrades to commercial properties; these must comply with downtown design guidelines created several years ago. Applications would ultimately be reviewed by Haley Swindle, community preservation specialist with Indiana Landmarks.

Meyer believed the application process should be reopened and her motion to do so passed unanimously.

There was brief talk about parks and recreation. A few members voiced support for the creation of a park board for the town, saying it would open a lot more grant opportunities.

The Hoosier Enduring Legacy Program is underway, originating from American Rescue Plan Act funds. The idea is for state municipalities to work together on lasting, impactful projects. Brookville and Franklin County are collaborating with Richmond, Connersville and Wayne County. John Palmer – president of FC Economic Development Commission and a member of the county's redevelopment commission – was selected as the local community coordinator to shepherd the program locally at a salary of $40,000. The core team, along with other town officials, began training this week.
Hayes mentioned Lynn Fledderman of Batesville, now the town attorney, has also offered her services to BRC if needed.