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Economic Development Notes

THE UPDATE ON PROJECTS WERE THE MAJOR ITEMS FOR THE NORTON CITY COUNTY ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT BOARD LAST NIGHT.  THE GRANT APPLICATION HAS BEEN TURNED IN FOR THE RENOVATION OF THE DOCTORS CLINIC FOR COLBY COMMUNITY COLLEGE.  THE TOTAL COST OF THE PROJECT WILL BE 416 THOUSAND DOLLARS.  THE ANNOUNCEMENT WILL BE MADE THE THIRD WEEK OF AUGUST AND THEN OTHER FUNDING SOURCES CAN BE FOUND.  THE NORTON COUNTY COMMISSIONERS SIGNED THE APPLICATION FOR THE RURAL OPPORTUNITY ZONE.  FOR 2012, THEY ALLOCATED 40 THOUSAND DOLLARS FOR ROZ.  THIS IS THE PROGRAM THAT HELPS PAY OFF STUDENT LOANS FOR PEOPLE MOVING TO NORTON COUNTY.  IT ALSO ALLOWS FOR FIVE YEARS OF NO STATE INCOME TAXES FOR THOSE MOVING BACK.  18 PEOPLE HAVE INQUIRED ABOUT THE ROZ IN NORTON COUNTY.  THE APPLICATION WILL GO TO THE STATE AND THEN THEY WILL MAKE THE DETERMINATION OF WHO WILL BE FUNDED.  THOSE APPLYING HAVE TO MOVE TO A RURAL COUNTY BEFORE THEIR APPLICATION CAN BE FUNDED.  THE ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT WILL SENT A PACKET OF INFORMATION TO THOSE INTERESTED.  NOT ALL WILL BE LOOKING AT NORTON COUNTY, BUT THERE ARE FOUR THAT ARE VERY INTERESTED.  THE OTHERS MAY BE INTERESTED IN OTHER COUNTIES.  THERE ARE 50 IN THE STATE.  THE BID OPENING FOR THE DOCTOR LYONS HOUSE WILL BE AUGUST 24TH AT TWO IN THE ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT OFFICE.  THE CONTRACTOR FOR THE HEATON BUILDING WILL BE SHAMBER RESTORATION OF DAMAR.  THEY WILL BE STARTING WITH THE OUTSIDE OF THE BUILDINGS IN THE DOWNTOWN AREA BEFORE WINTER SETS IN.  THEY WILL BE HAVING SIX SUBCONTRACTORS WORKING ON THE PROJECT.  DIRECTOR SCOTT SPROUL HAS A DRAFT OF AN APPLICATION LETTER FOR THE E-COMMUNITY LOANS.  THE LOANS CAN BE USED FOR MACHINERY, INVENTORY, SITE WORK AND OTHERS.  IT WILL BE ADMINISTERED BY THE NORTHWEST KANSAS PLANNING AND DEVELOPMENT IN HILL CITY AT A COST OF 25 DOLLARS PER LOAN GRANTED.  WHEN THE E-COMMUNITY IS DONE, TAX CREDITS WILL BE SOLD AND THE MONEY WILL BE USED FOR REVOLVING LOANS.  THE LAST PROMOTING NORTON COUNTY INITIATIVE WAS VERY SUCCESSFUL WITH CHIEF OF STAFF FROM GOVERNOR BROWNBACK’S OFFICE.  THE NEXT ONE WILL BE SEPTEMBER 12TH WITH SENATOR JAY EMLER, PLUS INVITATIONS HAVE BEEN SENT TO THREE OTHERS, BUT THEY HAVE NOT CONFIRMED.  THE CLOSING ON THE INCUBATOR SPACE, THE OLD CHAMBER OFFICE, WILL BE AUGUST 17TH.  THE CONTRACTS ARE STILL BEING WORKED ON AND THERE WILL NEED TO BE SOME CONSTRUCTION WORK DONE.  THE BUSINESS APPRECIATION MONTH AWARD WINNERS WILL BE HONORED WITH A RECEPTION AUGUST 16TH AT TEN AT THE SLEEP INN AND SUITES.  THEY ARE:  DESTINATION KITCHEN, ELLEVEN, OTTERS’ INCORPORATED AND MILTECH.  THE NEXT MEETING OF THE NORTON CITY COUNTY ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT BOARD WILL BE ONE WEEK LATER ON SEPTEMBER 20TH AT 5:30 IN THE NEW OFFICE ON SOUTH STATE STREET.  ALL MEETINGS ARE OPEN TO THE PUBLIC.