Officials announce Plant T1 investment increases to $60 million

Development Authority approves Shaw, Chick-fil-A bonds

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Members of the Development Authority of Bartow County voted unanimously to approve bond resolutions for both Shaw’s Plant T1 expansion in Adairsville and the construction of Chick-fil-A Supply LLC’s new facility off Cass-White Road at Thursday morning’s public meeting. 

Authority legal counsel H. Boyd Pettit, III said that an incentives resolution was approved for the T1 expansion several months ago.

“Once we approved that incentives document and started looking at doing the bond documents, they decided that their investment was going to be greater here than what they had anticipated,” he said. “They have decided that their investment will increase from $45 million to $60 million, so as a result of that, we’ve got to amend the incentives agreement because it was based on $45 million.”

The authority also voted unanimously Thursday to approve a taxable revenue bond series for the project totaling $20 million. 

“We’ve done one issue for them before that had a series A and a series B,” he said. “Series B was $80 million additional, over and above the $125 million initial investment. When they came back and started looking at what they would need in connection with the additional work at Shaw in Adairsville, they wanted to increase the bond amount by $20 million.”

While the amendments may alter the schedules of the bonds, Pettit said the alterations will have no impact on the incentives agreement, employment numbers or “additional extensions in connection with the abatements.”

The authority subsequently approved a taxable revenue bond resolution for Chick-fil-A Supply, LLC's distribution center project, which Pettit said would be used to construct an approximately 265,000-square-foot building and acquire “machinery and equipment in connection with their facility there.”

Originally set at $45 million, Pettit said the bond amount has since increased to $60 million.

“As with the Shaw project, this bond resolution, if you adopt it, authorizes the authority to go ahead and file for the validation of the bonds,” he said, “and we’re anticipating that the bond validation would take place on Sept. 4.”

Cartersville-Bartow County Department of Economic Development Executive Director Melinda Lemmon said the deal that brought Chick-fil-A to Bartow is emblematic of the County’s commitment to public-private partnerships. 

“As far as new companies, I can’t think of a company I’m more proud of to land them,” Bartow County Commissioner Steve Taylor said. “With the City and the County and our collaboration in making this community easy to do business, I think that’s why we’re getting so much business.”

That’s exemplified, Taylor said, by a recent business trip he took to the West Coast to meet with the higher ups at Vista Metals. Whereas in California the company has to jump through a plethora of “regulatory hoops,” Taylor said Bartow County essentially rolls the red carpet out for them. 

“In a lot of communities, you have to go through every single department — the gas department, the water department — and they don’t talk to each other,” he said. “Basically, we have a single source of contact right here, and that just makes things a lot easier for these companies … Vista Metals could do a commercial for us in California, they really could.”

And that led Pettit to bring up yet another major company that could be investing in Bartow shortly.

“One of the companies [Vista Metals] either supply or get supplies from, we’ve been meeting and talking with them and they were most appreciative,” he said. “It’s a company that Vista would be recruiting for us … they could actually bring [them] to our community, because of the way we do business here.”

The Adairsville-anchored company, Lemmon said, is certainly an asset for the County — and one that continues to grow, as evident by the $42.5 million bond the authority approved for the company's expansion last fall.

“The fact that we’ve got such a specialty supplier for the aerospace and automotive business, that, in and of itself, is a drawing card for our community to others who need them as a supplier,” she said. 

A third bond resolution item — this, for the Loloi Rugs distribution center off Cass-White Road — was a late scratch from the agenda. 

“They are not quite ready to come forward with their bond resolution and beginning the validation process,” Pettit said. “They do have bond counsel in place, I have talked with him a couple of times.”

Taylor noted, however, that the company does have a certificate of occupancy and has since leased a part of the warehouse to another company. 

Pettit said he anticipates the authority to address the proposed bond resolution at a special-called meeting over the next few weeks.