A redevelopment agency has been formed in South Jordan to aid economic development goals for the area of the city between the Jordan River and I-15.

City Administrator Richard Warne said the first order of business for the newly formed agency will be a study of the target area to determine if it meets qualifying guidelines for redevelopment assistance.State law allows redevelopment agencies to assist in financing the renovation of areas considered either physically or economically blighted.

To get the agency off the ground, the City Council is expected to approve a $6,000 grant from the city's economic development budget. As with most RDAs formed around the state, council members will also serve on the RDA board with the mayor serving as chairman.

Utah law does not allow specific property tax levies to fund RDA operations. Tax money is diverted to RDAs through a process called incremental tax assessments. When an RDA defines a specific project area, the tax valuation of the property is frozen. Traditional taxing agencies such as the city, the local school district and various special service districts will continue receiving their appropriate share of taxes based on the frozen assessment. Any taxes generated by increased value in succeeding years goes to the RDA.

The RDA can use that money to either directly fund projects or to provide repayment on bonds issued to finance projects.

Warne said South Jordan will start with a study that will look at problems affecting the area such as high voltage power lines, railroad tracks, flooded areas and the river itself. He said the RDA will use that study to determine if a project area is feasible and what kinds of development might be appropriate.

He said the RDA may take a look at other areas of the city in the future but there are no specific plans for additional studies at this time.