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Oil was discovered southwest of Liberal, Kansas in 1951. Photo by Arden Webb.
Oil was discovered southwest of Liberal, Kansas in 1951. Photo by Arden Webb.

Community Improvement Districts

Property owners may petition the City Commission to create a Community Improvement District (CID) for projects exceeding $200,000. Applicants may request special property tax assessments within the district, special sales tax up to 2% within the district or a combination of both. All property owners within the proposed CID must participate in the petition. Upon creation of a CID, revenue generated by these sources is available through a pay-as-you-go account. A CID can exist for a maximum of 22 years.

Eligibility Criteria

A CID project must:

  • Result in commercial, industrial and/or mixed-use projects, as well as common area amenities in residential developments.
  • Provide public or private improvements or ongoing services otherwise not financially feasible.
  • Promote otherwise unlikely redevelopment.

A CID will not be used if:

  • Construction has begun prior to approval.
  • The project is incompatible with a neighborhood plan, including any sexually oriented businesses, community correctional facilities, half-way houses, drug or alcohol rehabilitation facilities, new or used car lots, multi-game, casino-style gambling facilities or commercial billboards.

Eligible Costs

  • Buildings and facilities
  • Site improvements (ex. sidewalks, streets, parking lots, etc.)
  • Parking garages
  • Streetscape (ex. lighting, benches, awnings, barriers, etc.)
  • Landscaping
  • Communication/information booths, bus stops, terminals, hangars, restrooms, etc.
  • Cultural amenities (ex. murals, sculptures, fountains, etc.)
  • Airports, railroads, light rail and other mass transit facilities; and
  • Lakes, dams, docks, drainage conduits, etc.

Funds may be used for eligible ongoing operating expenses (ex. security, entertainment, promotion, training, market studies, etc.) only up to a maximum amount identified in the petition. Residential and mixed-use developments may not use funds for ongoing expenses.

Funds may not be used to pay development fees. Funds may reimburse capital costs incurred not more than one year prior to the creation of a CID and pay City administrative costs.

Petition Format

A CID petition must contain:

  • general nature of proposed project
  • public purpose served by CID financing
  • estimated cost of proposed project including maximum amount of CID funding to be paid prior to termination of CID, based on 125% of the total estimated amount of CID
  • revenue during the proposed term of the CID
  • proposed method of financing (special assessments or special sales tax)
  • proposed amount and method of assessment
  • proposed method of financing (pay-as-you-go)
  • map of proposed district
  • legal description of the boundaries of proposed district

CID projects will not require a financial analysis to demonstrate that the project would not be possible without a CID. The City will conduct a background check on all applicant(s) and project partners.

The non-refundable application fee is $1,500 upon submission of a petition. If approved, the City will be paid an on-going administrative service fee in an amount not more than 5% of the total CID revenues. The application fee will serve as a credit against the on-going fee.

Petition Process

Before submitting a petition, the applicant(s) submits drafts to the City Manager, the Finance Director, the Economic Development Director and any other designated staff. Drafts do not need to be signed. City staff will meet with the applicant(s) to evaluate the draft and determine the eligibility of the project.

When a petition is submitted to the City Commission, notice of a public hearing will be published once each week for two weeks in the City’s official newspaper. The second publication will be at least seven days before the hearing. Notice will be mailed to all owners and occupants of property within the proposed district at least 10 days before the hearing.

After the hearing, the City Commission may approve the CID by ordinance. When a CID is created, the City Commission, the City and the applicant(s) will enter a Development Agreement governing the CID.

Please contact us to learn more about the City’s CID policy and petition process.

Quick Facts

The Liberal Bee Jays, our semi-professional baseball team, have won five national championships and 13 state championships. The Bee Jays have been coached by three major league managers and have sent 165 players to the major leagues.


City of Liberal Economic Development | 324 N. Kansas Ave. Liberal, Kansas 67905
Email: jeff.parsons@cityofliberal.org | Phone: (620) 626-2257 | Fax: (620) 626-0589

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