State Sen. David Argall praised Gov. Tom Corbett's decision to designate the Borough of Tamaqua as a City Revitalization and Improvement Zone (CRIZ) Pilot area on Wednesday.
“This is a tremendous opportunity for the Borough of Tamaqua and its surrounding communities — Tamaqua is the first non-city and only the third municipality in Pennsylvania to earn this coveted designation," Argall said. "I’d like to applaud the local officials for their efforts to realize the potential of this program already utilized in Lancaster and Bethlehem. I’m looking forward to working with residents, borough officials, businesses, developers and others to maximize the borough’s potential and take full advantage of this program.”
CRIZ designation allows a municipality to utilize state taxes to help in the funding and development of under-used properties. The taxes collected from residents in a Pilot Zone also help repay debts and to facilitate the economic development within the municipality.
Created in 2013, the CRIZ program allows for two municipalities to receive CRIZ designations and one Pilot Zone approval before 2016. Up to two additional designations will be made annually starting in 2016.
The application process came under fire earlier in December when lawmakers requested that the application process be extended to allow more applications to be accepted.