After years of trying to hit home runs with its economic development efforts, Wichita City Hall is aiming for smaller plays.
The City Council last week previewed a plan that will make city economic development aid available to more and smaller businesses, along with revisions to sales tax policy to fund a “land bank” to help put abandoned homes and businesses back into productive use.
For years, the city has relied on development “matrix” to evaluate tax breaks for businesses.
The matrix essentially consists of data collected from developers and businesses to determine how their projects would benefit the city — and whether those benefits are sufficient to justify public investment in private for-profit ventures.
Under the current matrix, size matters.
The biggest tax breaks and other financial aid went to big companies that could claim to be making millions of dollars worth of new investment and creating