McLean County has become the first government body to approve expanding an enterprise zone to enable Brandt Industries to get incentives for a planned building expansion.
The County Board on Tuesday unanimously approved the zone expansion. The Town of Normal, City of Bloomington, Gibson City and Ford County are all expected to consider the measure next month.
Brandt plans to expand on its property in rural Hudson north of Normal. The enterprise zone would enable the Canadian ag manufacturer to get a sales tax rebate on materials it uses for the expansion.
The enterprise zone encompasses parts of McLean and Ford counties. It expanded to 14.1 square miles in January 2017 to allow for the new Destihl brewer in north Normal.
The enterprise zone can grow to as much as 15 square miles.
McLean County has also approved property tax abatements for Brandt. The tax breaks were dependent on Brandt hiring at least 50 full-time employees.
Company officials said they hired 85 full-time employees in its first year.
The tax break amounts to $61,122 for its 2018 tax bill, according to Zach Dietmeier, Vice President of Marketing and Communications for the Bloomington-Normal Economic Development Council.
Brandt started production in July after buying the former Kongskilde plant.
The tax abatement agreement requires approval from several local taxing bodies, including Unit 5, Heartland Community College and Normal Township. Unit 5 and HCC have already signed off on the deal.
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