Businesses hold cards close to vest

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  • Aug. 9, 2011 10:00 a.m.

By Treena Mielke

The Rimbey Business Association is tight-lipped about proposed amendments to a development incentive grant proposed by the town recently.

The businesspeople held a closed meeting Aug. 3 at the Rimbey Community Centre to discuss the incentive. A short press release was issued Aug. 4. Rhonda Rae Tarney, who is on the executive of the association, said the board is not taking questions at this time, but has agreed only to issue a press release.

The press release states the executive of the Rimbey Business Association agrees to the development incentive grant in principle only and has retained legal counsel.

The press release also states that the business association wanted more time to review the grant offer following the meeting between town officials and the business association held July 28.

“At the last meeting of the economic development advisory committee we had not had the opportunity to review the policy put forth by the town. We requested one week to review the policy in its entirety and propose amendments.”

The business association held the closed meeting to review the incentive and come up with proposed amendments.

“The membership instructed the executive to present the amendments to the town and request a response by Aug. 12,” the press release states.

The development incentive proposed by the town would give business owners the opportunity to receive up to $5,000 in a one-time municipal grant, depending on the cost of their renovations.

The proposed policy would see businesses with renovations ranging from $50,000 to $100,000 in construction costs eligible to receive $1,000. Funding would increase according to the cost of the construction.

Council and The Rimbey Business Association have been at a stalemate after struggling for several months to come up with a plan to replace the now defunct tax incentive program made available by the previous council.