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Council to mull offers

Washington’s City Council is scheduled to consider approving economic-development incentives during its meeting Monday.

The proposed $90,000 would go Spinrite Service Inc. and Spinrite Acquisition Corp. to assist in upgrading the former Caron International craft-yarn manufacturing plant in the city, according to a city document. The $90,000 would come from transfers from the city’s general fund ($45,000), water fund ($22,500) and sewer fund ($22,500).

A public hearing on the matter is set for 6 p.m.

Spinrite is a yarn manufacturer based in Canada. Earlier this year, it received an $180,000 grant from the One North Carolina Fund to help it expand its operations in North Carolina, a move that would create 90 jobs in Beaufort County over the next three years and lead to a $9.1 million investment over that same time period in the local plant, according to previous reports.

In late 2011, the Beaufort County Board of Commissioners voted to allocate $90,000 in county funds for the project.

Those incentives were a key part of Spinrite’s decision to choose Washington over other alternatives, a Spinrite executive said.

In other business, the council is scheduled to consider approving an agreement with the N.C. Rural Economic Development Center and a performance-and-loan agreement with Weir Valves and Controls USA regarding a building-retrofit grant.

“Weir Valve is upgrading its facility in order to retool for a new product line. The total project is estimated to be approximately $999,977, and will result in 82 new jobs at the Washington plant. The City of Washington, with assistance from the Mid-East Commission, applied for and received a grant through the Rural Development Center, Inc. for a grant of $410,000,” reads a memorandum from City Manager Josh Kay to Mayor Archie Jennings and the council. “Weir Valve(s) will provide the majority of the match through construction costs ($569,477) and the City of Washington will provide $20,500 to pay for administrative and management services for the grant.”

“Should Weir Valve(s) not create the jobs, they would be required to pay back the grant (via the enclosed performance/loan agreement and promissory note),” continues the memorandum.

The facility improvements will accommodate production of new high-pressure flow equipment for the oil and gas industry, according to the Rural Center.

The Washington City Council meets at 5:30 p.m. in the Council Chambers of the Municipal Building, 102 E. Second St. The council’s entire agenda may be obtained by visiting the city’s website at www.washington-nc.com, following the link for “Government,” then  “City Council” on the navigation menu to the right. Follow the “Meeting Agendas” link and choose from the various agenda dates.

About Mike Voss

Mike Voss is the contributing editor at the Washington Daily News. He has a daughter and four grandchildren. Except for nearly six years he worked at the Free Lance-Star in Fredericksburg, Va., in the early to mid-1990s, he has been at the Daily News since April 1986.
Journalism awards:
• Pulitzer Prize for Meritorious Public Service, 1990.
• Society of Professional Journalists: Sigma Delta Chi Award, Bronze Medallion.
• Associated Press Managing Editors’ Public Service Award.
• Investigative Reporters & Editors’ Award.
• North Carolina Press Association, First Place, Public Service Award, 1989.
• North Carolina Press Association, Second Place, Investigative Reporting, 1990.
All those were for the articles he and Betty Gray wrote about the city’s contaminated water system in 1989-1990.
• North Carolina Press Association, First Place, Investigative Reporting, 1991.
• North Carolina Press Association, Third Place, General News Reporting, 2005.
• North Carolina Press Association, Second Place, Lighter Columns, 2006.
Recently learned he will receive another award.
• North Carolina Press Association, First Place, Lighter Columns, 2010.
4. Lectured at or served on seminar panels at journalism schools at UNC-Chapel Hill, University of Maryland, Columbia University, Mary Washington University and Francis Marion University.

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