Saline's New Normal
Saline's future isn't all doom and gloom. "Residential property taxes started to come back a couple years ago, and we're almost flat [in revenue] this year," says Campbell. "But we still have commercial and industrial properties that'll be down next year by 5 percent because of a glut of vacant industrial and commercial properties out there. And if things do get better, it'll take seven-plus years for us to get back to where we were in 2008--even with 3 percent growth every year."
Nevertheless, Mayor Driskell insists, "We don't have a bad economy here in Saline. We did, but not now. The automotive industry is growing, and companies are expanding. We have a lot of land here suitable for development, and if the economy continues to grow, that land could be purchased." She figures the forty-two acres of property for sale in the city's business parks are worth about $2 million--and once the land finds buyers, "the investment in the buildings will also provide ongoing taxable value."
[Originally published in August, 2012.]