Nothing seems easy during the pandemic.
Families are struggling.
Businesses are struggling.
Local governments are struggling.
That’s true for the city of Rock Island.
It’s seen businesses close during the pandemic and lower tax revenue.
Yet Mayor Mike Thoms was somewhat upbeat during his recent State of the City Address.
He pointed to the fact that the property tax rate did not increase during the latest budget.
A tax hike was considered, city services are being maintained and the city intends to invest more than $10 million this year downtown.
Thoms presented a case for optimism despite the setback caused by the pandemic.
He’s hopeful for a light at the end of the tunnel.
Thoms joined us this week on 4 The Record for a conversation.
He discussed how important it was to relay that sense of optimism that a lot of people don’t feel, what gave him the biggest reasons for optimism and how the city figured out how to avoid raising the property tax rate despite the losses in revenue caused by the pandemic.
Thoms indicated the city plans to invest almost $4 million of TIF money on things like streets, sidewalks and lighting and another $10 million in downtown Rock Island this year.
Thoms explained how that $10 million will be spent and what difference he expects it to make in the business climate downtown.
Watch the full conversation in the video above.
Local 4 News, your local election headquarters, is proud to present 4 The Record, a weekly news and public affairs program focused on the issues important to you. It’s a program unlike any other here in the Quad Cities. Tune in each Sunday at 10:30 a.m. as Jim Niedelman brings you up to speed on what’s happening in the political arena, from Springfield, Des Moines, Washington, D.C. and right here at home.