City Council delaying motion for North Beach TIRZ

Posted at 11:30 AM, Oct 15, 2019
and last updated 2019-10-15 14:57:37-04

CORPUS CHRISTI, TX — North Beach development has been a topic of discussion for decades. On the agenda for today's city council meeting was to vote on a Tax Increment Reinvestment Zone for North Beach to fund development, however, the vote is on hold.

There will be a briefing starting at 3 pm and the public is invited to make comments at that time.

"Why would you do that?" said Precinct 1 County Commissioner Carolyn Vaughn, who is also the North Beach Task Force President. "It's cover for the council members that don't want to have to speak against it out front. And they have delayed and delayed this project."

Vaughn doesn't understand why the TIRZ for North Beach is having to be pushed off even further. She believes it is the hidden gem of Corpus Christi that is home to two of the city's biggest attractions.

This would be the fourth TIRZ plan for the city. Examples of previous successful ones include one on Padre Island, as well as one downtown. This proposal for a North Beach TIRZ includes, beach beautification and park maintenance.

"Just ... it's maintenance, maintenance is a big part of it," Vaughan said. "Public safety -- they could get cameras, things they don't have other there right now."

Vaughn says there is no reason this proposal needs to go behind closed doors, but City Business Liaison Arlene Medrano said a closed-session discussion isn't guaranteed.

"Our city attorney has attorney-client privilege obligation to our council members, so that is on there in case they do need to go into (executive) session to discuss matters in there," she said.

The TIRZ proposal would have 100% participation from the City for $20 million for the first 10 years. The county would also have 100% participation on top of that. Medrano said they are looking at $33 million, potentially, for a fully funded TIRZ.

Vaughn knows that a successful TIRZ will take years to be funded and completed, but she feels the city isn't pursuing the project with appropriate urgency.

"I'm not seeing a vision from the mayor right now on this right here," she said. "This is a no-brainer. He should be pushing this head on, with everything he's got, just like Judge (Barbara) Canales is -- I'm doing it. Because we see it would benefit our city and our citizens."