Plans are in the works to fill the empty MI Windows and Doors building.
The Clay County Council passed the first reading of two resolutions for tax abatements Monday night, which would allow IVC Industrial Coatings, Inc., to acquire the building and expand their operations.
"We are running out of room in our corporate location in Indianapolis and desperately need to expand," Ken Wright, Chief Financial Officer for IVC, said. "We already have a plant here in Brazil where we manufacture powdered paint products, and our hope is to move our corporate headquarters to Brazil as well."
Wright said the former MI building would be the location for manufacturing liquid paint products while the corporate offices would be at the current location at 2831 N. Industrial Park Dr., Brazil.
However, a couple of hitches are holding up the potential acquisition and move.
"We have to still get the air permits needed and we are still determining the current environmental aspects of the approximately 20-acre area," Wright said. "The owners of MI would be responsible for cleanup of any issues that might be there, but the amount of land and the site itself are what we are looking for."
The purchase of the building itself -- approximately $1.8 million -- is not yet official, but Wright sees this as nothing but a good thing for Clay County.
"Our expanding and moving our headquarters to Brazil would have a multiplication effect on the entire county because we plan to continue to use local vendors, and the extra plant would add to their revenue numbers as well," he said. "Although we would also be bringing over many of our current employees from Indianapolis, we should have job openings for local residents and hope some of our employees will move to the area from Indianapolis."
The existing plant in Brazil currently employs approximately 37 full-time workers and about 10 temporary staffers. The potential acquisition would add about 40 employees in a building which has been closed since December 2006.
The council approved the 10-year Real Property tax abatement, which would be for approximately $1 million in improvements to the building and site, and compromised on a seven-year Personal Property abatement, which would apply to nearly $2 million worth of new equipment.
"The equipment we are using in Indianapolis is at least 15-20 years old, and we want to start off here with state-of-the-art equipment," Wright said. "It could take nine months to a year before the move is complete."
Both abatement applications are subject to an abatement calculation agreement (aka Clawback agreement), which allows the county to potentially receive abated tax monies should the company not fulfill its goals -- whole or in part -- or leave the area before the abatement period concludes.
Due to the MI property being partly in both the Corporate Limits of the City of Brazil and in Clay County jurisdiction, the applications will also go before the Common Council of the City of Brazil.
The Clay County Council will review the applications for final action, of which any of the terms may change, at their April meeting.
Other items of discussion at Monday's meeting included:
* Approving additional appropriations to pay a copier lease agreement with the Clay County Sheriff's Department and for the Regional Service Council of the Child Welfare Services. The appropriations for the Regional Service Council comes from previously acquired funds and was needed in order for them to be used,
* Approved amended salary ordinances for the Community Corrections Department so raises were in line with that of all county employees. Salaries for the department are paid through grant money, not taxpayer money,
* Approved changes in the Clay County Personnel Policies Handbook which were approved by the Clay County Commissioners earlier in the day, and
* Appointed Jim Mayrose to the Alcohol Beverage Commission Board. Mayrose fills the position previously held by Guy Dickerson, who had been elected to the Clay City Town Council and cannot hold both paid positions at the same time.
The next meeting of the Clay County Council will be Monday, April 7, at 6 p.m., in the Commissioners' Courtroom of the Clay County Courthouse.