UPDATE: The Finance Committee of the Livingston County Board of Commissioners voted 5-4 this morning to recommend that the full board deny the tax district. If commissioners vote on Monday to accept the recommendation, it would stop the effort in its tracks.

Original Story: Livingston County has less than a month to pass a resolution specifically denying Hartland Township’s decision to establish a tax district or the district can move forward and seek state approval.

The township chose to establish a Commercial Rehabilitation District for seven acres near M-59 and US-23 so that a proposed Emagine movie theater would be eligible for tax abatement. At the county’s General Government & Health and Human Services Committee meeting Monday night, the board voted on a resolution supporting the municipality’s resolution to establish the district. The vote resulted in a tie, meaning the resolution of support died at the committee level and will not be brought to the county’s Finance Committee or Board of Commissioners.

Because the resolution from Hartland Township was only seeking the county’s support, the established district will remain unless the county passes a resolution denying it within 28 days. If the county does not take action, Emagine Entertainment will be allowed to apply for the tax emption through the state’s Tax Commission, who will have the final say.

Hartland Township Manager James Wickman tells WHMI it’s difficult to know whether the lack of county support will affect the applicant’s ability to receive the abatement. Wickman says in a perfect world, the application for exemption could be presented to the Tax Commission “…tied in a bow with a resolution of support from everybody.” The resolution though is not necessary.

Additionally Wickman says it’s not necessarily common for the county to pass a resolution of support in similar situations, and that sometimes they simply pass a resolution accepting that a municipality has established a district. Wickman says if the county does not pass a resolution denying the established district, the resolution of support that did not pass Monday is “…still an acceptable outcome.” (DK)