FARMINGTON — A request for a Credit Enhancement Agreement [CEA] for a proposed housing project will be considered at a future Selectboard meeting, it was decided at the Tuesday, Feb. 27, meeting.

Several questions were raised for which answers were not available.

Avesta Housing is planning an affordable senior housing project, Edgewater at 126 Willow Springs Drive in Farmington. Selectmen approved a Community Development Block Grant [CDBG] for the project Jan. 23. It would be two-story, 25-unit, affordable senior housing for those 55 years and older.

Lauren Turner, project manager requested a 75%/25% CEA, which would see 75% of tax revenues generated on the increased value of the property due to development returned to Avesta. Farmington would receive the remaining 25% of taxes generated from the development.

The proposed increase in valuation for the project was through an appraisal done by Avesta on the entire lot since Farmington doesn’t have an assessor and a revaluation project is starting, Turner noted. Taxes would more than double, she said.

The housing project is within the Farmington Downtown TIF District which was created in 2013.


Total project cost is estimated at $9.2 million, Turner noted. Funding is coming from several state and federal sources. Municipal or local sources are expected, with one option a CEA through the TIF, she stated.

The developer and the town share increased tax revenues, Turner said. Returning some of those tax revenues to the developer reduces the tax bill and offsets operating costs annually so the project can take on more debt, she noted.

Chair Matthew Smith asked about the time frame.

The CEA would remain under the existing TIF until it expires in 2044, about 20 years, Turner replied.

Had a survey been done to see how many affordable housing units there are in Farmington, what the need is, Selectman Dennis O’Neil asked.

Town Manager Erica LaCroix also asked what the market was, if Farmington residents were looking for housing or if it would be people from other towns seeking housing. She was concerned the project was for seniors only as there are people applying for general assistance who also need housing, something for Avesta to consider.


Most TIFs with CEAs, the CEA steps down over time, LaCroix stated. Over time, it is tiered down, the amount of revenue increases for the town, she said. She asked if the developer would be open to a step down arrangement.

Smith said the CEA would be discussed at a meeting in the near future to dictate where to go from here. “There is a lot to digest,” he added.

In other business, selectmen set voting hours for the municipal election on March 25 from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Community Center at 127 Middle Street.

O’Neil asked about taking into consideration those who work and the close time.

The start time is earlier than in the past because of complaints the town had received about people not being able to vote before work, LaCroix stated.

The annual town meeting begins at 7 p.m., time is needed to count the ballots before it starts, it was noted.

Comments are not available on this story.