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Putnam Commission Approves Sale Of 12 Acres In Highlands Business Park

/ The Upper Cumberland's News Leader
Putnam Commission Approves Sale Of 12 Acres In Highlands Business Park

Putnam County Commission approved the sale of just over 12 acres in the Highlands Business Park for what the county is calling the Ponderosa Project.

County Mayor Randy Porter said an existing company is looking to expand locally using two tracts at the business park. He said it will bring some 40 jobs with a starting salary of around $54,000.

“We think that this is a very good deal for Putnam County we’re getting a lot of high-paying jobs, which is what we’re looking for, and you’re not having to give any tax abatements when it comes to property taxes,” Porter said. “This will immediately go on the tax roll once the transaction is completed and we’ll start collecting property taxes on it.”

Porter said the company is not asking for any expansion incentives. He said they are only asking for a reduced sale price. The proposed sale price is some $22,500 per acre.

“The way the land lays it’s almost like the two tracts are separated,” Porter said. “(…) and that’s kind of one of the reasons we’re doing a little less on the land. If it was totally flat and ready to go, they’re going to have to do some earthwork on it.”

Porter said there are several provisions put into the contract, including penalties should certain requirements not be met. Those include not fulfilling the promised 40 jobs and not completing the facility within an agreed-upon timeline.

In other business, the county commission also approved an additional $125,000 from ARP funds to be put towards the Health Department.

Mayor Randy Porter said the state has put an additional $128,000 in funding into the project. He said the additional county funds would be used as a backup to make sure the Health Department can get everything it needs.

“You know when we did this a year and a half ago it was really hard to estimate building construction costs and everything so we didn’t do too bad compared to some other projects but we’ve still come up a little short,” Porter said. “So what’d I’d like to ask you to do, we’ve looked at everything to have some money for some furnishings and some contingency.”

Porter said commissioners had already committed $850,000. This would bring the total ARP commitment to $975,000. Porter said the state would put in the rest of the funds and the project will move forward as originally planned.


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