Grand Rapids

City Comm Agenda

Resolution approving the Fiscal Year 2018 Budget of the City of Grand Rapids SmartZone Local Development Finance Authority


Department:Economic DevelopmentSponsors:
Category:BudgetFunctions:City Commission, Committee of the Whole


  1. Item Description
  2. SmartZone Budget Request FY18

Content A

Attached is a resolution approving the Fiscal Year 2018 budget request of the City of Grand Rapids SmartZoneSM Local Development Finance Authority (SmartZoneSM LDFA).  The SmartZoneSM LDFA recommended approval of the attached budget at its meeting on May 19, 2017.


The FY2018 estimated tax increment revenues are projected to decrease more than 14% from FY2017 tax increment revenues.  This is primarily due to losses associated with real property taxable values and industrial personal property exemptions.  Tax increment revenues for the parcels added to the SmartZoneSM Certified Technology Park in 2016 are anticipated to be $4,163, or less than 0.4% of total tax increment capture.  No Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) grant revenue is anticipated in FY2018.


Expenditures in the FY2018 Budget provide for continued operations, developer reimbursement, local and national marketing, participation in medical device trade shows, support of the business accelerator and incubation services, and infrastructure projects.  Apart from the Committed and Ongoing Expenditures, the FY2018 Budget expenditures are now separated by the four Strategic Priorities defined in the 2016 Amended Tax Increment Financing Plan and Development Plan, approved by the City Commission on April 26, 2016.  Each Strategic Priority contains an appropriation for planned initiatives, in accordance with the SmartZoneSM LDFA Board’s determination at its meeting on February 23, 2017.  Expenditures proposed under the four Strategic Priority appropriations for planned initiatives, in addition to Tech Shop and Telecommunication Infrastructure, will be brought back to the SmartZoneSM LDFA Board for consideration prior to funds being expended. 


During FY2018, the non-profit organization formed by Start Garden called SG Ecosystem, Inc. (SGEI) will continue to advance, promote and cause high technology entrepreneurship within the Grand Rapids SmartZoneSM Authority District (the “Authority District”).  SGEI will serve the SmartZoneSM LDFA and its Authority District specifically through four program areas: communication, concierge, ecosystem measurement and incubation.  Since April 1, 2016, SGEI has assisted approximately 150 high technology start-up companies in the ecosystem to fill 104 jobs, retain 320 jobs, raise $36 million in capital, and earn $24 million in revenue.  In addition to serving the SmartZoneSM LDFA, SGEI will be working with the Start Garden Foundation to provide similar entrepreneurial support services throughout West Michigan.


The FY2018 Budget complies with the recently approved Amended and Restated Grand Rapids SmartZoneSM Agreement between the City, the SmartZoneSM LDFA and the MEDC.  Staff recommends approval of the attached Fiscal Year 2018 budget request.  If approved by the City Commission, the FY2018 Budget would return to the SmartZoneSM LDFA Board for adoption.



cc:              Eric R. DeLong







Content C

RESOLVED, that the City of Grand Rapids SmartZoneSM Local Development Finance Authority budget for Fiscal Year 2018, as attached, is approved.