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Two Ohio companies promise 130 jobs and $4M investment for JobsOhio grants
A total of $127,000 in grant money from JobsOhio will bring an additional 130 jobs to two western Ohio cities, the Dayton Business Journal reports. Mane Inc. will create 100 new jobs totaling $3.8 million in payroll in exchange for a $100,000 grant. The company “has been working through a $34 million expansion of its facility to increase its dry and seasoning product line (see our April 6, 2016 blog post).” In Sidney, Polyfill LLC “committed to a $4.1 million expansion of its facility in a bid that will add 30 jobs, or $1.6 million in payroll,” according to the article. JobsOhio awarded Polyfill a $27,000 workforce grant. For more, read the full article.
Hot Chicken Takeover plans to turn “funding infusion” into 150 new jobs by 2019
More money means more jobs to Hot Chicken Takeover owner Joe DeLoss — as many as 150 new jobs in the next few years, according to a recent article in Columbus Business First. The popular Nashville-style spicy chicken restaurant’s successful business model is evidenced by the lines of customers drawn to its North Market location, but the company has a social mission as well, “taking individuals who have had trouble finding jobs and giving them not only employment but also loans and other financial help to stabilize their lives,” according to the article. That social mission impressed Kentucky-based Access Ventures, “which has taken an undisclosed minority stake in the company.” That investment, plus others from “local sources DeLoss previously amassed,” will help “add three or four new restaurants in the next several years,” adding to the 50 people currently employed. “We want to have 200 jobs by 2019. That’s 200 people. That’s the real impact,” DeLoss said. For more, read the full article.
First Central Ohio Amazon fulfillment center opens, with second to follow soon
Amazon.com Inc. has opened its 1-million-square-foot fulfillment center in Obetz, and will open its second Central Ohio center soon, Columbus Business First reports. The 855,000-square-foot facility in Etna Township is “90 percent completed,” and Amazon has begun hiring for that location; the two locations combined are expected to “bring 2,000 jobs to Central Ohio,” according to the article. Amazon “said it would invest $220 million in the operations,” for which the company “earned the largest state tax incentives provided to any company over the past year, valued at $17.54 million.” For more, read the full article.
Middletown soliciting bids for development of city-owned properties
The City of Middletown is looking to create new business opportunities through development of four properties that were either donated to the city or forfeited, the Hamilton Journal-News reports. Middletown economic development director Jennifer Ekey said the goal is “to redevelop the properties and repurpose” the former Studio Theatre and a retail store on Central Avenue, the former Montgomery Wards store on Main Street and a commercial building on Clinton Street. City Councilman Doug Picard said, “[b]y moving forward with (requests for proposals), we can do something with [the properties] instead of waiting for someone to do something to get them off our books,” according to the article. Proposals for the Studio Theatre are due by October 3, 2016; applicants must attend a scheduled property viewing on either August 31 or September 14. Viewing dates for the other properties will also be scheduled, and the city “will be accepting completed proposals on a rolling, quarterly basis until a proposal is selected” for those sites. For more, read the full article.
JobsOhio funds new position to help NW Ohio companies
In her new position as talent-acquisition manager for the Regional Growth Partnership, Carolyn Rodenhauser will “work with companies to help find workers with the type of skills that are needed,” The Toledo Blade reports. Rodenhauser was previously the workforce development administrator for Hancock County; her new role “will be to help on a larger scale . . . [f]or example, she would help a firm looking for 100 information-technology workers,” according to a spokesperson for the Regional Growth Partnership. JobsOhio funded the new position; similar positions “have been created at other JobsOhio Network partners,” according to the article. For more, read the full article.
Elyria banking on redevelopment plan for Midway Mall
When Elyria’s Economic Development Specialist left more than a year ago, Mayor Holly Brinda decided to make a targeted investment focusing on the redevelopment of Midway Mall, “a gamble Brinda said she is willing to take because doing nothing would only set Elyria farther back,” The Chronicle reports. Brinda hired mall expert Jeff Green to evaluate the 1.1 million-square-foot mall and “tell her how it could be changed for the better instead of left to languish.” Jeff Green Partners and the Hoffman Strategy Group will work together on the city-commissioned redevelopment plan that “will serve as both a tool for future development and a selling point to anyone willing to invest in the area’s potential,” according to the article. Midway’s management partners “support the development of the plan” and have participated in selecting the consultants. Brinda said there is a consensus that “a redevelopment plan is needed to attract investors and developers,” calling the Midway Mall area “an economic driver” for both Elyria and the county. The city, Brinda said, has an interest in “the highest and best uses for that property,” and the redevelopment plan “gives us a unique opportunity to take some action to shape our future.” For more, read the full article.
Port authority offers training grants for Muskingum County manufacturers
The Zanesville-Muskingum Port Authority has had a training grant program for local manufacturers since 2014, but says not many have taken advantage of it, whiznews.com reports. Matt Abbott, Executive Director of the Port Authority, said, “[i]t’s an application, a competitive process offering $50,000 for training opportunities to local manufacturers to assist their workforce and bottom line,” according to the article. Abbott “also said that this is something that the Port Authority can do locally to assist businesses to help them grow, expand, and make investments in the community.” He added that the Port Authority’s regional partner also has “training opportunities and grant dollars in monies available to help supplement the bottom line of any manufacturing company here in Muskingum County.” To apply, visit the Zanesville-Muskingum Port Authority’s website at http://www.zmcport.com. For more, read the full article.
Westerville will decide on TIF after summer recess
A proposal before Westerville City Council to create a 30-year tax-increment financing (TIF) district for the 100-acre Braun Farm property could bring two development projects to the site, ThisWeek Community News reports. Van Trust Real Estate and Spectrum Retirement Communities “are set to develop a 282-unit, multi-family complex and a 164-unit senior living facility” on Cooper Road near Cleveland Avenue, according to the article. The TIF would “set aside funds for infrastructure work that would initially be paid for by developers but would be reimbursed through collected funds from the city.” Assistant City Manager Julie Colley “said schools and other entities would continue to get their current portion of the taxes,” saying, “[t]here is no loss of revenue by anyone.” The TIF is expected to generate almost $600,000 per year, or $17.7 million over the 30-year period. Council Chairman Craig Treneff said, “[t]he reason why it makes economic sense for cities to do this . . . is because it’s an absolute fact that, but for some kind of tax relief — tax abatement or a TIF, these developments just don’t happen.” The proposal will have two more readings after City Council’s summer recess ends. For more, read the full article.
Rickenbacker to get first master plan update in 20 years
Amid “a boom in international cargo deliveries,” Rickenbacker International Airport will soon see its first master plan update in 20 years, Columbus Business First reports. The Columbus Regional Airport Authority “expects to award a $1.63 million contract to Michael Baker International Inc. for a master plan and airport layout plan update” for Rickenbacker. David Whitaker, vice president of business development for the authority, said, “[t]he purpose of a master plan is to understand what (traffic levels) mean for facilities and infrastructure. It will take a look at our existing facilities . . . talk about their condition, their suitability to accommodate future growth. The master plan looks out 20 years.” Rickenbacker’s last master plan update was in 1998; the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) suggested this update as the facility “experiences a surge of cargo activity, growing to 90,000 metric tons last year from about 78,000 a year earlier and 70,000 in 2013.” In 2014, Columbus airport officials “introduced an ambitious capital improvement program calling for $91 million in upgrades to infrastructure and facilities around Rickenbacker"; Franklin County officials “suggested the mostly cargo airport needed a stronger game plan with new funding partners coming to the table.” For more, read the full article.
Grants and loans will stimulate $35M investment and 285 new jobs in Greater Cincinnati
JobsOhio has awarded grants and loans to five Greater Cincinnati companies in return for pledges to create 285 new jobs and invest $35 million, Cincinnati.com reports. The 2016 completed projects include pledges from the following companies: TP Mechanical Contractors, to create 100 jobs and invest $150,000 in capital improvements; Integrity Express Logistics, to add 116 jobs and make $14.1 million in capital improvements; and MadTree Brewing, to make $18 million in capital improvements and add 23 jobs. Kimm Coyner, a vice president at REDI Cincinnati, the JobsOhio liaison for Southwest Ohio, said, “[w]e help companies of all sizes get what they need to succeed in the region. Sometimes that’s an incentive, or in these cases, it can be a grant or a loan.” REDI Cincinnati also said that so far in 2016, “employers they’ve assisted have pledged to create 1,964 jobs and retain 4,917 jobs,” while also committing to “completing $157.3 million of capital investments in the region.” For more, read the full article.