Crossville Chronicle, Crossville, TN

March 12, 2014

Panel OKs amendment for CoLinx expansion grant

By Gary Nelson
Senior staffwriter

CROSSVILLE — The Cumberland County Budget Committee approved a $707,500 budget amendment in order to manage flow through grant money from the state for a facility expansion at CoLinx.

An interlocal agreement was made between Cumberland County and the city of Crossville for the city to administer grant funds received by the county from the Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development FastTrack Infrastructure Development Program in order to assist CoLinx in the expansion.

The state requires the grant proceeds to process through the county and the county, upon receipt of the grant funds, shall reimburse the city of Crossville payments administered by the city under the program.

The Cumberland County Commission approved a PILOT (Payment in Lieu of Taxes) program for the Industrial Development Board for CoLinx during its June 2013 monthly commission meeting.

The company committed to a multi-million dollar expansion, add roughly 65 jobs and to retain more than 700 jobs in the county, according to the agreement.

The county approved the PILOT lease by the board with the company and the company is required to make payments in lieu of taxes to the city of Crossville and Cumberland County for a term not to exceed 10 years following the completion of construction of the project.

The 10-year agreement gives the company a payment plan of no payments for the first four years, 25 percent for the next two years, 50 percent for the following two years and 75 percent for the last two years of the agreement.

The CoLinx expansion is a 210,000 square-foot facility expansion and a $10 million investment by the company.

The budget amendment was approved after a motion for approval was made by Allen Foster, 4th District commissioner. Foster's motion was supported by Mike Harvel, 7th District commissioner.

The committee also approved a $52,748 budget amendment for the Cumberland County Health Department because the health department has received funding from the state of Tennessee Tobacco Settlement monies.

The health department plans to promote tobacco prevention and cessation, including in-house programs and partnering with Head-Start and teen organizations. The funding is provided 100 percent by the state and requires no local match.

The health department will contract with private agencies to offer the classes.

The amendment was approved after a motion was made by Nancy Hyder, 2nd District commissioner. Hyder's motion was supported by Harvel.

Commissioners on the budget committee also approved a $543 amendment for the Art Circle Public Library to allow the library to accept donations in the amount of $543.

The committee also approved a $90,226 amendment for operation of the new Crossville Cumberland County Big South Fork Visitors Center. The amendment takes the funds the city donated toward the operation of the facility and transfers those, as well as the other half of the operational costs from the county so they can be used in an agreement between the county and the Crossville Cumberland County Chamber of Commerce, who will operate the facility.

It was approved after a motion was made by Terry Carter, 6th District commissioner. Carter's motion was supported by John Kinnunen, 9th District commissioner.