Hey kids! Let’s play ball while your parents are drinking!

This came to my attention yesterday while I was reading the Planning Commission’s agenda (Item# 13)

Screen shot 2014-01-04 at 11.41.20 AM


While I don’t debate the Pentagon having adult beverages at the facility, I wondered why this needed to be hidden under the cover of another organization, called the ‘Sanford Frontiers’. According to this SFBJ article in September;

Pulling it together is Sanford Frontiers, a wholly owned component of Sanford Health incorporated as a nonprofit earlier this year.

Sanford Frontiers was created primarily to help the health system’s researchers bring their work to the marketplace, but its duties are broader than that. President Rich Adcock and his small staff also are tasked with facilitating certain property development, namely the sports complex near Benson Road and Westport Avenue.

They also play the ‘poor non-profit’ card;

Sanford hopes to break even, White said.

“Our overall goal on the entire complex is to just cash flow,” he said. “If we could get to that point, we’d consider it a success.”

While Sanford Health and Sanford Frontiers are nonprofits, that doesn’t mean the property involved in the complex is tax-exempt. Sanford likely will pay property taxes on all of it, said Kyle Helseth, director of equalization for Minnehaha County.

Sanford hopes to break even?! BAHHAHAHAHA! Is this just a way for Sanford to say that while all other hospitality industries in SF have to pay on the altar of entertainment taxes, we are doing this for the common good? As for the property tax statement, why not mention the almost $10 million in TIF rebates?

But what I want to know is why Sanford Health, and the Sports Complex want to create an entirely different entity? So they are not associated with greasy franchise restaurants and alcohol consumption? Or to hide profits? It’s certainly curious, and something I don’t fully understand, but if Kelby and T. Denny are involved with Lloyd, Huether and Smith, ‘Roses’ are not the smell I am getting for the public.

28 Thoughts on “What’s up with the ‘Sanford Frontiers’ ?

  1. Jack Frost on January 4, 2014 at 3:36 pm said:

    It is my understanding that Sanford Frontiers is responsible in assisting in the development of the entire complex. The TIFs you mention were only for the streets and infrastructure not the real estate. It is a very reasonable use of the TIF program. The sports complex is a great asset to the Sioux Falls community. The indoor pool should also be built there!

  2. ProudLeftWingNutJob on January 4, 2014 at 7:29 pm said:

    Interestingly enough the CEO of TMI hospitality, the organization that has the hotel at the Sanford sports complex and is building the hotel attached to Sanford heart hospital, it is also on the Sanford Board of Trustees.

  3. No to Noem 2014 on January 5, 2014 at 4:05 am said:

    Wow! I am continually amazed at how much Denny Sanford has donated. I wonder of the next big announcement will be the purchase of naming rights to Sioux Falls. It won’t be Racoon City but Sanford City? Sanford Falls? Just Sanford South Dakota?

  4. Jack, you have to realize that Sanford at one time tried to give the land away. So they cooked up the largest TIF in city history to get out of paying taxes on it. Over $9 million. That is around 20 years of property tax rebates. While I think the Sports Complex is a great thing for the community, and will be prosperous, I just don’t understand the need for a TIF, or at least one so large, for basically a entertainment complex.

  5. rufusx on January 5, 2014 at 10:30 am said:

    More trash talk.

  6. rufusx on January 5, 2014 at 10:33 am said:

    And again – you demonstrate that you don’t have any intention of being honest about the TIF process – instead wanting to characterize it as a “rebate”. The continued dishonesty of your presentation of process on this issue does not make you more believable on other issues.

  7. Poly43 on January 5, 2014 at 11:02 am said:

    TIF’s were originally a subsidy tool to help redevelop blighted areas. Abuses flourish, as in SF, when districts are drawn up where development would happen anyway. Cronyism between cities and their favorite developers has led the State of California, where TIFing was born, to do away with the program.

    Just a question of time before the TIF cronyism in SF will lead to its extinction. In the meantime, the city’s favorite developers getting fatter and the city’s poor get leaner.

  8. Ruf, that’s what it is. Developers pay their FULL property tax, then the TIF portion is REBATED back to them. You can call it what you want, but I call it a rebate.

    REBATE, noun;
    a return of part of the original payment for some service or merchandise; partial refund. (The service is property taxes which are used for education and criminal justice).

    Now, Ruf, let’s see how many comments and paragraphs it gets you to explain that, that isn’t what a TIF is. But do yourself a favor, and save your time and energy.

  9. Poly, I find it interesting that NO developers have applied for TIFs recently, and I guarantee, you will not see any applications until AFTER the municipal election. They know what the public’s perception is of them, and God forbid any of their ‘candidates’ look bad for approving them.

  10. anonymous on January 5, 2014 at 12:12 pm said:

    According to an interview Greg Jamison did on Knobe last week, at this Tuesday’s Council Informational meeting he will be proposing a work session to discuss TIFs.

    I attended the last work session on January 11, 2012 where the Council discussed TIFs. The outer room of the Council chambers was packed with developers. I was sitting next to Mike Cooper, Director of Planning and Building Services, and I will never forget hearing one developer lean over to ask another, “What are you doing here?” and the response was, “I heard the City is giving out free money,” and they all laughed! Gave me a whole new perspective on TIFs!!!

    On another note, let’s not forget, taxpayers have over five million dollars invested in the nine football fields used by the South Dakota Jr. Football Association (at the Sanford Sports Complex).

  11. Poly43 on January 5, 2014 at 12:49 pm said:

    TIF died in California for the same reasons it will die here.

  12. rufusx on January 5, 2014 at 1:44 pm said:

    Tax money would – over time – have a PORTION of it dedicated to the costs of street and utility extensions necessary for developmental expansion. TIFs’ effect is to dedicate the ENTIRE amount of property taxes to said street and utility development – paying it off over a SHORTER time period. It is not a “REBATE” (full pay-back for a cost). The cost of development is still incurred – taxes are still paid.

    All a TIF does is dedicate taxes to a SPECIFIC purpose vs. general purposes for a LIMITED time.

    Fungible – look it up.

    Example, in Lennox, Wilson Trailer built a new factory in industrial park – where NO Street and NO utilities were in existence. In order to construct said street and utilities – the CITY of Lennox bonded the costs. Typically – the bond would last for 15 years, and a PORTION of Wilson’s property taxes would be used to pay it off – but mostly – it would come out of the general funds – I.E., ALL the taxpayers of the city would pay for it.

    But – wait for it – a TIF district was created and the property taxes from Wilson for the first 5 years (not 15) were dedicated to pay it off. Saving the city 2/3rds of the interest on the bond and eliminating the need for OTHER taxpayers to fund construction that would really ONLY benefit one entity.

    Now that the TIF bond is fully paid off – Wilson’s property taxes ALL go into the general fund – enabling the reduction of the mill rate for ALL taxpayers.

    Again – fungible – look it up.

    Just a hater DL – just a hater. Hate will blind you; you know.

  13. rufusx on January 5, 2014 at 1:47 pm said:

    If you’re claiming that Sioux Falls’ TIFs works some other way to all other TIFs in the state – you’re gonna have to show me that.

  14. rufusx on January 5, 2014 at 1:48 pm said:

    Ha poly – “The Anti-Planner”. Name says it all – all for chaos and anarchy; stumble off into the darkness and thrash about.

  15. rufusx on January 5, 2014 at 1:50 pm said:

    The alternative text for their charts explaining TIFs – on the right hand increment in the last charts is “Wouldn’t have happened AT ALL.” But of course – there is only ONE WAY to look at TIFs – right?

  16. Poly43 on January 5, 2014 at 5:32 pm said:

    TIFs have gone out of favor in California for a reason ruf. It’s called cronyism. How you can be right on some issues of social injustice, and completely clueless in others is a mystery.

  17. Ruf, nice try. But you are gonna have to try a bit harder. First off, a ‘rebate’ is a ‘partial’ return of money, just like a TIF. Secondly, I have voiced on this site, that I am not against TIF’s just ones that only benefit special interests. It sounds like the one in Lennox worked out for you. Great. But we are talking about how they are abused in Sioux Falls. No hate here, I just want equality.

  18. Poly43 on January 6, 2014 at 7:36 am said:

    Tif102- while we scratch for ways to fund para transit the big rollers are lined up at the money trough. That tif money comes from the taxpayer….

    ….. and these are the guys grinning from ear to ear.

  19. pathloss on January 6, 2014 at 10:09 am said:

    A TIF for alcoholics. Now we’re talking. Better than marrying a woman who owns a liquor store and loves you more than your dog. The corruption can’t be stopped until the feds come in and clean up this crime syndicate. Stay at the bar, it’s gonna be a long wait.

  20. Good read here…I looked up “fungible” just to make sure..yep, just what I thought. Here it is:

    fun·gi·ble (f n j-b l) adj.
    1. Tit for Tat
    2. You scratch my back, I’ll scratch yours

  21. rufusx on January 6, 2014 at 12:16 pm said:

    The problem isn’t the idea of a TIF – as I’ve pointed out by their proper use being of benefit to taxpayers above. The real problem is – as poly puts it – cronyism. So – why don’t you just attack the rreal problem – The improper use of a tool – – vs. the tool. It’s like blaming a brush for a poor painting – or a guitar for the musicians inability to read a score.

    Go ahead blame the guitar – doesn’t make you look particularly smart.

  22. rufusx on January 6, 2014 at 12:23 pm said:

    Lora – when applied to finances – fungible means a commingling of funds – I.E., tax dollars in the general fund might be used for a building, or for salt, or for salaries. As a result – it is impossible to sort out which SPECIFIC dollar – from an individual taxpayer might be used for any one of them.

    In the case of TIFS (or really NONE-TIF dollars) – it is impossible to determine which specific dollar might pay for which particular front foot of a street – UNLESS you have dedicated tax dollars from the abutting property to those particular front feet.

    So, with a TIF, rather than commingling a ‘property’s tax dollars with all others (making them fungible) it is KNOWN that this particular tax dollars pay for that particular street. It’s visible accountability – precisely the opposite of the “conspiracy” of “hidden benefits” to developers that DL promotes here.

  23. rufusx on January 6, 2014 at 12:25 pm said:




    adjective: fungible

    1. (of goods contracted for without an individual specimen being specified) able to replace or be replaced by another identical item; mutually interchangeable.

  24. Where was I attacking the tool? What is the title of this post, this is about the Sanford TIF, that is what I am attacking.

  25. pathloss on January 7, 2014 at 9:34 am said:

    We’re back in English 101. Don’t ruin it. I’m recalling the hot girl that sat beside me.

  26. pathloss on January 7, 2014 at 9:54 am said:

    Beer, Babe, & Basket of wings; that’s a direction for TIF’s. Shhh, they’ll take it back and spend it on developer landscaping or pickleball.

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