Spreading the word about tax increment financing, or TIFs

South Dakota state and local officials are working to get the word out about a helpful, but admittedly confusing, funding source.

Lieutenant Governor Matt Michels was in Sioux Falls Monday with other state financial experts to discuss 'Tax Increment Financing' or TIFs. They're designed to spur economic growth by helping with the cost of public infrastructure improvements. They can be especially helpful in areas facing economic hardship.

"Virtually every community uses a tif in some way, shape or form. Aberdeen is a great example. They've used it in the past, local TIFs, to try to help with some housing issues there," Secretary of Revenue Andy Gerlach said.

TIFs have also been used to redevelop downtown Sioux Falls. But state leaders say many local governments are missing out because TIFs can be confusing and they aren't always used right. The state has been aggressive in recent years by reaching out to local leaders in forums like this one.