City councils across England today called on the Government to consider allowing local authorities to raise funds for stalled regeneration schemes by issuing bonds.
As part of a British Property Federation (BPF) campaign the leaders of Liverpool, Manchester, Newcastle and Birmingham city councils called for the introduction of Tax Increment Financing (TIF) to fund regeneration schemes that have halted following the collapse of the property market.
Pioneered in the US, TIFs would allow local authorities to issue bonds that could be paid back using the increased tax base that – it is assumed – would be the direct result of improved infrastructure.
“If we are really serious about growing the UK economy out of recession and supporting the fundamental role that city regions play in this, then we have to enable our cities to raise the finance they need to put essential infrastructure in place,” said Manchester Council leader Richard Leese.
“Mechanisms such as Tax Increment Financing have proved to be successful in many other cities around the world, and I am pleased that more and more influential bodies like the British Property Federation are now actively supporting this agenda.”