SBT Credit For LifeSavers Plant

July 26, 2004
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HOLLAND — Additional tax credits from the state will provide a further boost to an Ada firm's plan to redevelop the former LifeSavers candy factory.

The Single Business Tax credit — valued at $1 million — from the Michigan Economic Development Corp. is on top of a previously approved tax-increment financing plan for the site.

Ada-based Fusion Properties, doing business on the project as East 48th Street Properties, is converting the former LifeSavers plant on the city's southeast side by reconfiguring the nearly 400,000 square feet of industrial space into six self-contained spaces for lease to small manufacturing businesses.

The SBT credits can provide Fusion Properties more flexibility in negotiating leases with potential tenants who want to take advantage of the tax credit, said Chuck King of Paramount Properties, who represents Fusion Properties.

One company, Midwest Pallet, presently occupies about 45,000 square feet of space.

Fusion Properties plans to covert additional space in the factory as tenants are signed, King said.

"Everyone's going to have a special need or special kind of finish, so you really don't want to go do it until you know what's needed," he said.

Interest in the space "has been pretty good" and includes a couple of business prospects that need large blocks of space, King said. He expects it to take two to three years to fill the available space.

The new SBT credit is expected to help create more than $10.8 million in private investment and hundreds of new jobs as the spaces are leased.

Fusion Properties previously received approval last January through the MEDC to capture approximately $898,000 in state and local taxes for demolition and asbestos abatement inside the factory, which closed in 2002 and has been designated by the city of Holland as a brownfield site.

"The value gained by redeveloping brownfield sites cannot be overstated," Gov. Jennifer Granholm said in announcing the SBT credits. "Turning around blighted properties that were once thought too costly to redevelop will bring the economic development and jobs we need in Michigan."

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