2016 brought record sales tax revenue to Brookfield, coming in at $1,452,111. Sales tax revenue accounts for approximately 8% of the overall Village revenues, with much of that coming from out of town visitors. The overall business climate has improved significantly, with 29 new businesses coming into the Village in 2016, and almost 100 since 2013.
Vacancies are down and business retention has been key to the Village’s economic development strategy. Notably, long-time downtown businesses, Paisans and Irish Times, each celebrated their 25th year in Brookfield and underwent major renovations. The Village’s relationship with the Chamber of Commerce remains strong as well.
The restructuring of the Community and Economic Development Department including the hiring of a Director for Community and Economic Development and a Community Planner is an integral part of our progress. Many pro-development policies have also been put in place by the PEP Village board and staff helping to streamline processes and guide development.
In addition, the Village hosts Developer and Realtor Breakfast presentations intended to inform outside developers and realtors about the many assets the community has to offer. This has led to increased awareness of the Village of Brookfield. Events such as “Bike Brookfield” also give Brookfield visibility to the entire suburban area.
The PEP Village Board and staff continue to make economic development a top priority, taking a systematic long-term approach. Aggressive implementation of the 2020 Master Plan has been a big part of this, and a new Comprehensive Plan will be completed in 2018. The Board recently voted to adopt the most modern building code, as well as an overhauled zoning code. Also key to future development are the creation of the Ogden Avenue and 8 Corners Tax Incremental Financing (TIF) programs, related management plans, long-term capital planning, storm water management, and the purchasing of several key properties along Ogden Avenue. The Village also recently received a grant for an Active Transportation Plan to be implemented beginning in 2017.
With the recent developments along Ogden Avenue, funds in the TIFs are beginning to increase, which will give the Village more ability to assist in future development. The Board’s goal is to bring solid, desirable, and sustainable commercial development to Brookfield that continues to move our Village forward and strengthen the foundation of our community’s future.