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Thursday, July 31, 2008

County Commission Acts on Two Industrial Bond Requests

By: Sid Riley

At the Tuesday evening meeting of the Jackson County Commission, Bill Stanton, Director of the Jackson County Development Council made two formal requests to the Board relating to approval authorization for Industrial Bond Issuance. The County is merely the "pass through" agency for this process, giving legal authorization for the issuance of these bonds if the projects proceed as defined.
In the case of ‘Project Springs" the request is for approval for sale of $10,000,000 in industrial revenue bonds. This project does not involve any tax concessions to the new industry which will modify the Russell Distribution Center at the Marianna Airport Industrial Park in order for the facility to properly house their new state of the art bottling plant. The project will result in $25,000,000 being added to the county property tax rolls, and will initially employ 30 workers, with planned growth to 100 jobs. The project also includes construction of a $75,000 water retention system that will facilitate that area of the industrial park. This project has been underway for almost two years, and is near becoming a reality.
The second request was for an agreement to allow issuance of Industrial Bonds totaling $40,000,000 which would be a component of a total package of incentives that would be offered to a prospective ethanol production plant which would be located just southwest of Campbellton. In this proposal there are no tax concessions being offered, and the capital investment would total over $200,000,000 which would make this company the largest tax payer in the county, and would double the investment of the new Green Circle BioEnergy plant in Steel City.
This new company would bring fifty five new permanent high paying jobs, and would also create over 200 construction jobs while being built.
"There are still many components of this project that are not yet completed, which involve grants from State agencies and the Federal government. However, agreement to this bond issue is one of the key components. The company does have alternate sites for consideration in Alabama and in Georgia, but we have a very good chance to be their location of choice", Stanton explained.
In both instances the Board of Commissioners unanimously approved the request.

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