Five years after setting up a program to offer a tax break to the developers of the city’s downtown movie theater, Ravenna is pulling the idea of a community reinvestment area off the back burner.

Council’s Community and Economic Development Committee decided to move forward with an agreement with Bricker & Eckler, a consulting firm that specializes in community reinvestment areas. Mayor Frank Seman said the contractor, recommended by Economic Development Director Dennis West, would take a look at the city and help recommend what areas might be best for the program. 

The program would allow property owners to seek and receive tax breaks on improvements to their structures. They would still pay taxes on the value of the property before the improvements.

Although industrial property owners can seek an “enterprise zone” tax abatement for improvements they make, there is no such incentive in place for residential or commercial property owners. A “pilot program,” which applied only to the Ravenna theater, was approved in 2016.