Unified Government Pays Off Village West STAR Bonds

The Unified Government of Wyandotte County/Kansas City, Kansas is celebrating an economic achievement. The STAR Bonds that funded the Village West Shopping and Tourism district were paid off, five years ahead of schedule, as of December 1. 

STAR bonds allow a city to direct its share of sales tax revenue toward paying off the bonds. With the bonds now paid, the Unified Government expects to see more than $12-million in new sales tax revenue annually. That money will allow for new services and enhancements to existing programs based on findings from citizen engagement efforts such as the Community Survey and the Mayor’s Listening Tours. 

Before the STAR Bond investment to build Village West, the area produced just $208,000 a year in property taxes and nearly no sales tax.

The Unified Government says the area is now valued at $127-million, produces $22-million a year in property taxes and generates $700-million in retail sales. Those sales generate an estimated $50-million a year in state taxes, $13-million in local sales taxes and $2-million in hotel taxes. In 2015, Hollywood Casino generated $14.8-million in revenues for local governments, schools, civic and charitable organizations.

And, they add, STAR Bond investment in Village West has created nearly 11,000 jobs at Village West businesses (5,700 jobs), Cerner Continuous Campus (4,000 jobs), Hollywood Casino (700 jobs), and the under-construction Dairy Farmers of America headquarters (325 jobs).