General Broach given tax abatement 9.24

Written by David Green.

A standard 12-year tax abatement was approved Monday for Morenci’s General Broach Company, although the decision wasn’t completed without some discussion on the issue of tax breaks.

Mark Miller and Larry Stover of General Broach explained the need for new equipment during a public hearing at the city council hearing.

A few years ago, Miller said, about 90 percent of the company’s business was related to the automotive industry. Today, about 85 percent of the cutting tools they produce are for use in the aerospace industry.

Stover said the company is not only changing the focus of its work, but it’s also broadening its horizons with contracts from other countries.

Former planning commission member Gary Valentine stated that granting an abatement doesn’t guarantee that a company will remain in town, even though a business may threaten to leave if an abatement isn’t granted. When he was a commissioner, an abatement was approved for Morenci Engineered Rubber Products, he said, and the company was gone within a year.

“Sometimes we need to watch what we’re doing here because it will be with us for a long time,” Valentine said.

He asked what an abatement on $852,000 equates to in lost taxes, but neither General Broach nor city officials had an answer.

Stover was asked about job creation and he noted the company employed 45 workers five years ago. The current level is at 74. There was very rapid growth and much slower growth currently.

Additional overseas contracts would increase job needs, he said, as would new ventures such as creating broaches to serve the rapidly growing wind energy industry.

Granting abatements, said councilor Keith Pennington, shows the city’s support for an industry, and the 50 percent of taxes still paid is better than none at all.

A tax break not only helps a company stay in town, said mayor Doug Erskin, but it allows the company to explore other development.

“We want to progress,” he said. “If we limit them, no progression is made.”

Pennington added that attention is often focused on bringing in new companies, but council can’t minimize what’s already here providing jobs.

“We’re here to stay, believe me,” Stover said.

  • Play Practice
    DRAMA—Fayette schools, in conjunction with the Opera House Theater program, will present two plays Friday night at the Fayette Opera House. From the left is Autumn Black, Wyatt Mitchell, Elizabeth Myers, Jonah Perdue, Sam Myers (in the back) and Lauren Dale. Other cast members are Brynn Balmer, Mason Maginn, Ashtyn Dominique, Stephanie Munguia and Sierra Munguia. Jason Stuckey serves as the technician and Trinity Leady is the backstage manager. The plays will be performed during the day Friday for students and for the public at 7 p.m. Friday.
  • Front.F.school
    PROGRESS continues on the agriculture classroom addition at Fayette High School. The project will add 2,900 square feet of space and include an overhead door that would allow equipment to be driven inside. The building should be ready for the start of school in August. Work on ball fields and a running track is also underway.
  • Front.rover
    CLEARING THE WAY—Road crossings in the area on the construction route of the Rover natural gas pipeline are marked with poles and flags as preliminary work nears. Ditches and field entry points are covered with thick planks in many areas to support equipment for tree clearing operations. Actual pipeline construction is progressing across Ohio toward a collecting station near Defiance. That segment of the project is expected to wrap up in July. The 42-inch line through Michigan and into Ontario is scheduled for completion in November. The line is projected to transport 3.25 billion cubic feet of natural gas every day.
  • Front.geese
    ON THE MOVE—Six goslings head out on manuevers with their parents in an area lake. Baby waterfowl are showing up in lakes and ponds throughout the area.
  • Accident
    FAYETTE resident Patricia Stambaugh, 64, was declared dead on the scene of a single-vehicle accident Friday morning south of Morenci. Rescue units were called around 9 a.m., but as of Tuesday, law enforcement officers had not yet determined the time of the accident. According to Ohio State Highway Patrol, Stambaugh was driving west on U.S. 20 when her Chevrolet Malibu traveled off the north side of the road and down a steep embankment, coming to rest in Bean Creek (Tiffin River).
  • Front.teacher Leading
    PRESCHOOL MUSIC—Fayette band director Jeffrey Dunford spends the last half hour of the day leading the full-day preschool class in musical activities. Additional photos are on page 7 of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.poles
    MOVING EAST—Utility workers continue their slow progress east along U.S. 20 south of Morenci. New electrical poles are put in place before wiring is moved into place.
  • Face Paint
    FUN NIGHT FUN—Savanna Miles sits patiently while Abbie White works on a face paint design Friday during the Morenci PTO Fun Night. Gracie Snead watches the progress after having spent time in the chair. Abbie was one of several volunteer painters, each creating their own unique look. Additional photos are on the back page of this week’s Observer.

Weekly newspaper serving SE Michigan and NW Ohio - State Line Observer ©2006-2017