Tax Increment Financing (TIF) is a unique mechanism that enables an urban renewal authority or board to use the net new tax revenues generated by projects within a designated urban renewal area to help finance future improvements. TIF is a new source of tax revenue, not an additional tax, that would not be available but for new investment.
When a redevelopment project is being planned, the urban renewal authority or board analyzes how much additional property and/or sales taxes may be generated once it is completed. That “tax increment” then can be used by the urban renewal entity either to finance the issuance of bonds or to reimburse developers for a portion of their project costs. In either case, the new tax revenue that is created must be used for improvements that have a public benefit and that support the redevelopment effort, such as site clearance, streets, utilities, parks, the removal of hazardous materials or conditions, or site acquisition.
Source: Denver Urban Renewal Authority