Overland Park has agreed to a 10-year property tax abatement of $44.75 million to benefit a project that will rebuild the northeast corner of West 110th Street and Nall Avenue, the site of the now imploded Century Link building.
The abatement nearly doubles the amount the city had agreed to on Jan. 9. At that time, the proposal was for economic development revenue bonds that would exempt construction-related expenses from sales tax at the Overland One office project near Interstate 435.
Since then, the developer asked for additional support, saying it will lease one of the buildings to Creative Planning, a financial management company based in Leawood.
Creative Planning is in “rapid growth mode,” said Evan Fitts, a lawyer representing the company at Monday’s city council meeting.
The financial planning firm has 206 local employees but expects as many as 610 over the next 10 years. The current average salary is over $100,000 per year.
The abatement is subject to several restrictions. There’s a 25 percent abatement for the initial capital investment, but it goes to 40 percent while the company maintains a full-time staff of 400 or more.
The company could lose the abatement if employment drops below 200 or if the average salary drops below $75,000. If those things happen, some of the previous benefits could also be reclaimed by the city.
Peter Mallouk, founder of Creative Planning, told the council his company had searched the area for a site and found the corner to be a good fit.
Although the council voted unanimously for the idea, not all in the meeting room were on board. Charlotte O’Hara, of Overland Park, was one of two who spoke against it at the public hearing, saying it was not necessary to give tax incentives when the site was such a good match.
“I have to question why the city feels the necessity to give a tax abatement,” she said. “We know that Overland Park is one of the premier cities of the United States. This is where people want to come to do business.”
Council members said they were comfortable, though, given the claw-backs in the agreement and a cost-benefit analysis that projected that for every dollar the city invests it will get back $3.44.