MIAMI COUNTY — The city of Troy is one of several ConAgra sites in the running for expansion of the company’s meat snacks and local entities are chipping in with a tax abatement package to sweeten the deal.
The company requested 100 percent tax abatement for 15 years for real estate and personal property exemptions for the $69 million project. The project breaks down the costs including $27 million in new construction and additions and $42 million in machinery and equipment for the $69 million total. It is projected to hire 50 full-time jobs and add $2 million in payroll. The company currently employs 681 at its Troy site.
On Monday, Troy City Schools was the first to approve a proposed tax abatement. The city of Troy will review the request at its Dec. 17 council meeting. The Troy City Council’s law and ordinance committee approved the recommendation at its Dec. 10 meeting.
According to the Enterprise Zone program application filed on Dec. 4, ConAgra has requested to expand its production of meat sticks. It is requesting to expand its building by 62,800 square feet to accommodate additional equipment for the product. The application states the project is to begin March 1, 2019, and completed by December 2020.
“ConAgra is evaluating the costs and benefits of expanding its meat stick product production internally at Troy versus externally manufacturing by an outside manufacturer (co-packing) or locating the line at a competing ConAgra plant in a state outside Ohio,” ConAgra Finance Manager Dwayne Bowling states in the application.
“To expand in Troy, it is necessary to reduce our costs as much as possible, including tax costs, due to the potential investment. As a result, this project is conditions upon potential incentives offered by various government jurisdictions that will reduce the tax impact of this investment.”
At the committee meeting, Jim Dando, Troy economic development director, said the company recently acquired Duke’s “upscale” snack stick product. Dando said since Slim Jims are already manufactured in Troy, the city hopes to bring the business to its Dye Mill facility.
At the Dec. 10 meeting, Dando said the decision is still pending corporate headquarters. With Troy’s water quality, Dando said, “Troy does have an edge” citing the Ohio EPA’s award to the Troy plant recognizing its environmental efforts.
The committee approved the application with emergency designation to be reviewed at the Dec. 17 meeting.
Property to be added to the production line includes smokehouses, conveyors, packaging and sanitation equipment. The company currently has two EZA agreements. The 2012 and 2010 EZA agreements were both for 15 years with 100 percent abatement for real and personal property. The application states the company paid $24,033.01 in July 20, 2018, for six months.
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