Forsyth approves TIF fund program

FORSYTH, Ill. (WAND)- The Village of Forsyth Board of Trustees approved a TIF grant program Monday to fund exterior improvements to businesses.

The board approved the creation of a TIF district in January.

The new program allows businesses within the TIF district to receive matching grants up to $10,000 for improvements to exteriors, facades, attached signs, lighting, landscaping and other features, according to a new release. For 2018, the village has designated $30,000 for the program.

“Generally, Forsyth along Route 51 and our old downtown … a lot of our businesses are already very attractive and well-maintained,” said Community and Economic Development Coordinator Andrew Zupkoff.

Interested businesses would have to apply for the grants for projects, which would have to be approved by the Village Board, Zupkoff said.

In a report to the board, Zupkoff also said recent grocery store closures in Decatur could make it easier for Forsyth to attract a grocery of its own. He pointed to analysis that showed Macon County oversaturated with grocery stores.

“The closure of some Decatur grocery stores loosens the regional market up a little bit and might make it easier for us to get a grocery store here,” Zupkoff said.

Zupkoff told the board he had reached out to Niemann Foods, the operators of Save-A-Lot and County Market, but was told they would not be able to open a store in Forsyth anytime soon.