Jumer's Castle Lodge owner seeks 100% tax rebate for 10 years for redevelopment of hotel property

The owner of the vacant and dilapidated Jumer's Castle Lodge in Bettendorf would be given a full rebate of all property taxes for 10 years under a proposed development agreement scheduled for consideration at next week's (July 5) city council meeting.

The agreement and proposed Tax Incremental Financing (TIF) ordinance have been given aldermen for review and the council is expected to set a date for a required public hearing on the redevelopment plan.

The vacant hotel was purchased by CDCQC LLC, a corporation controlled by Jim Russell, of Russell Construction Co., last fall in a tax sale. He said at the time the company planned to demolish the 9-story structure that had become a landmark along Interstate 74 and the Spruce Hills Drive interchange.

The hotel had been closed for months when CDCQC purchased the building and 10 acres of land by paying back taxes owed by the previous owners.

Under the development deal, the city would rebate 100 percent of the property taxes on "any projects that are constructed on the property" for a period of 10 years.

The agreement "is consistent with the TIF incentive that was extended for the prior hotel project," city official stated in the proposal given aldermen. The previous owner, Quad City Lodging Partners, LLC, had sought TIF rebates to help finance renovation of the hotel, but that work never began and the building furnishings were sold at auction last fall.

The agreement would require that "demolition of the existing structure begin by October 1, with its diligent completion," and that the new buildings on the property must be completed within five years of the agreement approval in order to receive the tax rebates.

"The current development proposal is for a multi-building, mixed-use concept," according to the documents provided the council. "Specific tenants and users have not yet been identified."

Under TIF incentives, property taxes assessed by the city, school district and county are rebated back to the developer. The affected county and school district taxing authorities have no vote on whether to grant the rebates under current state law.

However, the City of Bettendorf has had an informal policy to ask for input and approval of TIF projects from the affected taxing bodies, in this case the Scott County Board and the Bettendorf Community School District.

The hotel property had an assessed value of $3.8 million in 2015, but its new 2016 assessment has been cut to $791,000.

Peoria businessman James Jumer built the 210-room hotel, which opened in 1973. It was one of three German-themed Jumer lodges, two in Illinois and the one in Bettendorf. All had Bavarian decor, authentic antique furnishings and German food specialties featured on the hotel restaurant menus.

CLICK HERE for the TIF agreement under consideration by the city council.

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