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FC Cincinnati could have a practice facility by next summer -- but why won't it pay taxes?

Posted at 5:53 PM, Sep 05, 2018
and last updated 2018-09-05 17:53:45-04

MILFORD, Ohio -- FC Cincinnati on Wednesday cleared the final hurdle between the team and a 2019 opening day for its Milford practice facility.

The Clermont County Port Authority announced an agreement that will allow FC Cincinnati to avoid paying property tax or taxes on construction materials for the $30 million facility. Instead, the port authority will finance the cost of building the facility through bonds and will then lease the land -- 24 acres on U.S. 50 in Milford near I-275 -- to the team.

Those bonds, which FC Cincinnati will purchase, will also fund construction materials estimated to cost about $1 million, according to the port authority.

In addition to sidestepping taxes on building materials, FC Cincinnati will also not have to pay property taxes because the Port Authority -- which, again, is leasing the land for the practice facility through bonds to FC Cincinnati -- is tax exempt.

To make up for the lack of property taxes going back to Milford, the port authority will pay Milford School District a one-time fee of $105,000 and an annual fee of about $9,000, most of which will support various county levies, according to a press release from the county port authority.

"The structure of the lease answers all of the questions related to what the economic impact will actually be and if it is worth the level of incentives being provided," said Andy Kuchta, executive director and secretary of the Port Authority. "The Port Authority will have the choice to not renew the lease every 360 days for any reason. This is not a 20-year deal but a 360-day deal, full stop."

The soccer complex will include a 30,000-square-foot training facility and a 6,500-square-foot youth academy.