Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Meeting Notes

Technology Park Task Force
Plan To Attract New High Tech Manufacturing Facility to the Growth Cell
Monday 30 March 2009 at 11:00 am
Fire Station 1 at 505 NE Monroe
Meeting Notes
Members Present:

Jim McConoughey EDC
Vicki Clark EDC
Ryan Spain EDC
Sally Hanley EDC
John Whalen State DCEO
Scott Sorrel Peoria County
Jane Gerdes COP PW
Pat Landes COP PGM
Rachael Parker COP ED
Bobby Gray COP ED
Susan Schlupp COP ED
Craig Hullinger COP ED

1. Introductions

2. Summary of actions to date – Hullinger summarized actions taken to date. We know that we have a chance to attract a high tech company to Peoria that would construct a million square foot building that would have a market value of approximately $30,000,000 plus equipment and hire 850 employees. This company is sought after by a number of other areas, including Michigan, Ohio, California, and other locations in Illinois. The City has shown the business a number of sites. They prefer a Growth Cell site near Route 6 and Allen Road, if the site can be made free or low cost to match offers being made by other States and areas.

3. Site Options – Hullinger showed the company a number of sites within or near the City. They prefer a growth cell site with convenient access to Route 6. The City has identified 7 potential sites that would access Route 6 via Allen Road and Townline Road, and/or Walton, with a secondary access from Radnor Road. Each site has varying costs and benefits.

4. Land Costs - Three of these sites could be acquired by the City or County government with a purchase / donation from the owner for $50,000 per acre. The two available sixty acre sites would cost $3,000,000, with the remaining approximately 55 acre site $2,750,000. We do not yet have prices for the other potential sites. The infrastructure costs for the other sites are higher.

5. Planning & Zoning – Pat Landes noted that depending on the actual uses within the facility, it may require a special use permit. She thought that planning and zoning approval can be obtained for the site.

6. Incentives - Enterprise Zone, Longer Abatement agreements. Craig Hullinger and Susan Schlupp will set up meetings with the Dunlap School District, Kickapoo and Radner Township so that we can propose that they join in the Enterprise Zone and provide Property Tax abatement. The Enterprise Zone only runs for 4 more years. We are asking the State to extend the Enterprise Zone to reauthorize and extend the Zone so we can get the full 5 year abatement. We will also convene the JRB with Dunlap and Kickapoo and Radner Township present to discuss the possibility of a longer abatement agreement. Depending on infrastructure costs, we may ask for 6 or 7 or 8 or 9 years of abatement if that would be required to pay for infrastructure and land costs.

7. Enterprise Zone Expansion - Rachael Parker will get started on the expansion of the Enterprise Zone. We will annex everything that is in the City but not yet in the Enterprise Zone. And we will prepare to annex unincorporated ground if we can get a very good price on a site that is not yet annexed.

8. The Enterprise Zone would generate nearly $3,000,000 if the Dunlap School District and the Township joins and if the State approves the extension of the Enterprise Zone – at present it will end in 2014. The $3,000,000 in revenue could be used to purchase the site, and/or as the local match for

9. Potential Stimulus Grants, Federal and State - Bobby Gray will work with the EDC to apply for grants from the Federal and State to help pay for infrastructure and land acquisition costs. The stimulus bill is creating several possible paths for assistance. EDC has a data base developed for these grants, and will assist in applying for these grants.

10 . State assistance for road, utility, and rail extensions – John Whalen will work with State DOT to determine the amount of help they can provide for road and rail extensions. He will contact the personnel at IDOT to determine current assistance levels.

11. Infrastructure costs – Jane Gerdes and PW will calculate infrastructure costs for the alternate sites, including estimated costs for road, utility, and rail extensions for alternative sites.

11. Free Trade Zone – the EDC will fill out the required paperwork to designate the area as a FTZ. We will seek for all business in the area to be part of the FTZ.

12. Next meeting – the group agreed to meet in two weeks on Monday April 13, 2009 at 11:00 am at Fire Station 1 to report progress.

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City Planner, Colonel, Marine Corps Reserve Retired, Vietnam Vet, married to Beth Ruyle