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Tax increment financing (TIF) is a powerful tool for economic development that Starkville has used to fund such developments as The Mill at MSU and improvements to the Middleton Marketplace shopping center, but Judy Phillips wanted her audience to understand that a TIF is not a magic bullet.
Phillips, a research associate with the Mississippi State Universityâ€™s John C. Stennis Institute for Government and Community Development, said TIFs were a way to finance a current investment with money expected to come from that investment in the future. She said the TIFâ€™s funding sources were property and sales taxes from the geographic area that received the TIF investment.
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