Selectmen approve tax incentives for businesses

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The Goldenrod Corporation on Lancaster Drive in Beacon Falls is one of two businesses that will receive tax incentives under an ordinance created this year to spur economic development in Beacon Falls. –FILE PHOTO

BEACON FALLS — Two businesses are the first that will take advantage of the town’s new tax incentive ordinance.

The Board of Selectmen last week approved tax abatements for Goldenrod Corporation, which is located at 25 Lancaster Drive, and Dibra LLC, which is based in Seymour, under the town’s tax incentive ordinance.

The Board of Finance approved both applications in June.

The tax incentive ordinance, which was passed by voters in March, offers tax abatements for businesses that invest $150,000 or more in a new commercial building or improvements to an existing commercial building. The incentives are offered in three tiers based on how much money a business is investing — $150,000 to $299,999, $300,000 to $2,499,999, and $2.5 million or more.

Goldenrod Corporation and Dibra LLC fall into the middle tier of investments. The businesses will receive a four-year tax incentive that abates 50 percent of taxes in the first year and incrementally decreases to 20 percent in the fourth year. The abatements go into effect on the October 2018 grand list and will be applied to taxes paid in the 2019-20 fiscal year.

The first tier of incentives offers an abatement for three years, while the highest level offers an abatement for five years.

Dibra is in the process of constructing a new, nearly 1,900-square-foot building at 113 South Main St. According to the property card, the property and unfinished building is assessed at $99,850.

Mario Trepca, who owns Dibra, wrote in the application for the incentive that he expects to spend $430,000 on the new building.

Trepca also owns the building at 94 North Main St. In the application, Trepca said that sandwich chain Subway moved into the building on North Main Street and he would like to do something similar in the new building.

“I believe that if a national chain can see a promising future in [Beacon Falls] others will follow,” Trepca wrote.

Goldenrod is adding on to its more than 30,000-square-foot building on Lancaster Drive. Stephen Pretto, Goldenrod Corporation chief financial officer, said in the company’s application that Goldenrod expects to spend $610,000 on the expansion.

According to the property card, the company’s building and property is assessed at $1.38 million.

Pretto wrote in the application Goldenrod employs 47 people and the expansion will create three additional jobs.

“Beacon Falls will benefit from the project with Goldenrod’s increasing revenues and employees from within town, while also adding equipment to the Beacon Falls grand list,” Pretto wrote.

The Economic Development Commission developed the tax incentive ordinance with Sadie Colcord, an economic development consultant to the town, to spur economic growth.

“The tax incentive program has done exactly what we intended – it has provided support for local businesses as they expand in Beacon Falls. This is a great step forward for the town because it shows these companies that we are serious about assisting them in every way we can, and I expect that message to spread far beyond the local community,” Colcord said.

Colcord said the town is working with two additional companies that are interested in the tax incentive.

Economic Development Commission Vice Chairman Jeremy Rodorigo echoed Colcord’s sentiments, saying the program is moving forward as the commission had hoped.

“I think it is going exactly as planned,” Rodorigo said. “Hopefully, it will prove out what a positive step it is in the right direction for the town.”