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Commissioners to discuss incentives, appoint new leaders

The new Rowan County Commissioners will get right to work Monday, considering incentives for a unnamed company that has been code-named  “Project Nine Mile.”

In an initial economic impact study, prepared by Rowan Works Economic Development, the company is projected to provide 250 jobs and invest about $20 million in Rowan County. According to the study, the unnamed company has not yet decided to locate in Rowan County. Rowan Works Economic Development Director Robert Van Geons said the incentives hearing was “fast-tracked” because of the company’s proposed timeline.

The description of the company in the economic impact study doesn’t specify the company’s name or what it produces. Instead it says “the company behind Project Nine Mile is an American based manufacturer of products.”

The study says the company is considering sites in North Carolina and other Southern states.

The study says the company plans to make a decision in early December and start construction in January 2015.

The facility would serve as the company’s regional headquarters and be located near the recently announced retail complex in Summit Corporate Center. The site being considered for “Project Nine Mile” is 32.55 acres just south of the retail complex site. Its facility would be more than 200,000 square feet.

The incentive agreement would be for $5 million over five years, if approved. During each year of the agreement, “Project Nine Mile” would generate $133,250 in tax revenue for Rowan County. The county’s incentive agreement would be for $99,938 per year, with the county retaining $33,312, according to the economic impact study.

The South Salisbury Fire District would also receive added revenue — $15,888 annually and $142,992 over 10 years, the study states.

At the end of the study, it states: “We have the opportunity to actibely support a company that is a leader in its industry and to help spur development in the county-owned Summit Corporate Center. If approved, news of this project will resonate positively with companies connected to these operations, both locally and beyond.”

The site proposed for “Project Nine Mile” is owned by Keith Corporation, based in Charlotte. Keith Corporation bought the 32-acre site from Rowan County in 2008.

Other items on the commissioners’ agenda include:

• Selecting a new chairman and vice chairman, a process that occurs every year

Just before the new board selects its chairman, Clerk of Superior Court Jeff Barger will give Greg Edds, Jim Greene and Judy Klusman the oath of office.

The previous board, which includes outgoing commissioners Jim Sides, Chad Mitchell and Jon Barber, will meet Monday, but only to approve minutes from Nov. 17.

Just after the new board selects its chairman and recognizes the outgoing commissioners, there will be a short recess and reception.

• Approving a $4,583 grant for the Rowan County Library to upgrade its group study room’s technology

The grant is expected to fully cover the cost of the upgrade.

• Rescheduling a public hearing to make text amendments for a mining operation

The text amendments relate to setbacks, access and storage of waste material. The public hearing is being rescheduled because of administrative oversight and failure to properly advertise the hearing, according to agenda attachments.

• Approving a grant for Salisbury Rowan Community Action Agency.

The incentive agreement would be for $5 million over five years, if approved. During each year of the agreement, “Project Nine Mile” would generate $133,250 in tax revenue for Rowan County. The county’s incentive agreement would be for $99,938 per year, with the county retaining $33,312, according to the economic impact study.

The South Salisbury Fire District would also receive added revenue — $15,888 annually and $142,992 over 10 years, the study states.

At the end of the study, it states: “We have the opportunity to actibely support a company that is a leader in its industry and to help spur development in the county-owned Summit Corporate Center. If approved, news of this project will resonate positively with companies connected to these operations, both locally and beyond.”

The site proposed for “Project Nine Mile” is owned by Keith Corporation, based in Charlotte. Keith Corporation bought the 32-acre site from Rowan County in 2008.

• Establishing the meeting times of the new board as 3 p.m. on the first Monday of the month and 6 p.m. on the third Monday.

• Approving an amendment to a grant for a Gildan access road

Originally, it was proposed that the road be turned over to NCDOT for maintenance after construction. Instead, Granite Quarry would be responsible for maintenance.

• Selecting a voting delegate for the upcoming North Carolina Association of County Commissioners’ Legislative Goals Conference

• Consideration of setting a second December meeting date to consider the county’s audit

The audit was previously expected to be ready by Monday’s meeting, but Finance Director Leslie Heidrick said the state needed for follow-up on financial figures in the audit. Heidrick said the follow-up work didn’t concern a finding or citation.

Contact reporter Josh Bergeron at 704-797-4246

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