Commission to consider adopting incentives policy to entice new business to county

Published 3:43 pm Friday, June 15, 2018

When members of the Carter County Commission meet next week, they will consider adopting an incentives policy designed to help the county attract and retain businesses.

City of Elizabethton Director of Planning and Economic Development Jon Hartman presented an incentives policy to members of the Budget Committee earlier this month.

The intent of the policy is to help provide last-dollar incentives to businesses and companies responsibly and with a minimal impact to current taxpayers in order to encourage those businesses to locate here or to expand their existing operations here. The policy will also help to grow the economy and tax base in Elizabethton and Carter County and provide capital investment to attract new businesses and companies to the area.

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The policy will set in place standards such as the number of jobs created and the pay rate and benefits for those jobs in order for companies to qualify for any incentives under the program.

The Committee approved the adoption of the policy and voted by a 7-1 decision to forward the policy along to the full Commission for approval.

Members of the Commission will also consider a request by the Elizabethton/Carter County Animal Shelter to place any money left over in their 2017-18 fiscal year budget into a reserve account to be used for the upcoming major repairs that will be needed on the facility’s HVAC system. The total cost of the repairs is unknown at this time as the Animal Shelter needed to obtain copies of the blueprints for the system before any companies would evaluate the needed repairs and provide an estimate.

The Budget Committee approved the request by a 7-2 margin. The request will now go before the full Commission.

The Carter County Sheriff’s Department presented a budgetary request to the Budget Committee this month that will be presented for full Commission consideration on Monday.

Chief Deputy James Parrish presented a request to allow the Sheriff’s Office to place any excess revenue collected from the housing of federal prisoners for the U.S. Marshals Service into a reserve account to be used to pay deputies for overtime, buy back employee comp time, and to upgrade and improve the communications infrastructure at the Sheriff’s Department. The reserve would be for any money collected above the $900,000 prisoner board bill threshold the county requires the Sheriff’s Department to meet annually to fund their budget.

The Budget Committee approved the request by a vote of 7-1.

In other business, the Commission will consider a resolution for the county to accept the annual Tennessee Department of Transportation Litter Grant which provides funds for the clean up of roadside litter as well as litter prevention educational programs.

Commissioners will also hear a report on the additions and deletions to the county’s tax rolls by Carter County Trustee Randal Lewis.

The Carter County Commission will meet at 6 p.m. on Monday, June 18, in the courtroom located on the second floor of the Carter County Courthouse. Prior to the meeting, the Budget Committee will host the state-required public hearing on the proposed fiscal year 2018-19 budget in the courtroom at 5 p.m.