Jasper County action on Four County
Development Authority criticized in Morgan County Paper
At the September Commissioners
meeting the Commissioners voted 2-2 to defeat a Restructuring of the Four County
(Joint) Development Authority Revenue Bonds.
to renegotiate the interest rates, Jasper
County will cause all
four counties involved to pay a higher interest rate over a shorter period of
time (5 years vs. 12 years). The other
counties are not happy, and the Morgan
County newspaper said so
in the following editorial.
The Morgan County Citizen http://morgancountycitizen.com/
September 18, 2008
Morgan County Citizen Editorial
There is $6.8Million of debt
remaining over 12 years. The bond
insurer has lost its favorable rating and therefore bond issue in
jeopardy. Interest rates will increase.
The payment on this debt is guaranteed
by 4 counties--Morgan-15%; Jasper-10%, Newton-37.5%; and Walton-37.5%. At present, Jasper pays approximately $70,000
per year on its share of the debt.
Comm. Bernard has repeatedly said that he thinks it is wrong
for Jasper County to continue with the 4CDA. He has asked the other counties to buy Jasper
out several times. At the BOC meeting
Denny Dobbs, Treasurer or the 4CDA, said he didn’t know why Jasper was in the
project to start with. TWG does know.
Jasper is in this project because they were the Tier II (or
Tier III) County. This designation
comes from the State and allows businesses in smaller counties with a Tier II
designation to receive special tax benefits. The businesses receive tax credits. Any business that opens in the Stanton
Park will receive these tax benefits afforded by the fact that
Jasper County is part of the Authority that
owns the Park. For this reason, the other counties will never let Jasper County
out of the contract. The tax benefits
are part of the plan to get businesses to locate in the business park.
Tier 1 counties, the
state’s least developed counties, are ranked 1 through 71. Companies creating
five or more new jobs in a Tier 1 county may receive a $3,500 tax credit. Tier
2 counties are ranked 72 through 106. Companies creating 10 or more new jobs in
a Tier 2 county may receive a $2,500 tax credit. Tier 3 counties are ranked 107
through 141. Companies creating 15 or more new jobs in a Tier 3 county may
receive a $1,250 tax credit.