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Flowery Branch mulls Buford firms TAD request
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Flowery Branch City Council is set to vote Wednesday on whether to approve a tax allocation district reimbursement request for the developer of a planned $15 million downtown project.

Hortman & Dobbs in Buford is seeking $361,000 following completion of the project’s first phase, which includes extension of Pine Street from Church Street to Railroad Avenue and the construction of two commercial buildings.

City officials plan to present two financing options — one involving a lump-sum payment and the other an annual payment over five years "based on available funds in the TAD special account."

"From the city’s perspective, the two approaches have equivalent impacts financially," according to a report from Atlanta-based Bleakly Advisory Group, the city’s TAD consultant.

The firm "recommends that the city proceed with the approach (that) is preferred" by Hortman & Dobbs, the report also states.

Hortman & Dobbs is planning a makeover of an area just off Main Street and bounded by Railroad Avenue, Church Street and Chestnut Street. The project will feature a mixture of boutiques, eateries, parking garage and homes.

Phase one could begin in June, Kellin Dobbs, a partner in the firm, has said.

The executive summary for the request states that phase one is expected to be finished by February 2011.

The firm is set to receive up to $135,000 in tax increments next month for demolition work already done in the project.

Under state law, local governments can create tax allocation districts as a tool to lure developers to blighted areas, using property taxes from developments to pay for certain public-use projects within the district.

Wednesday’s meeting is set to begin at 9:30 a.m. at City Hall, 5517 Main St.