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Published May 22, 2009, 06:45 AM

County approves tax exemption for fertilizer facility

The Stutsman County Commission on Thursday approved a five-year tax exemption for a planned bulk dry fertilizer facility planned by Gavilon Grain. The facility is to be located with Gavilon’s grain elevator commonly known as Peavey West in James-town. The plant would bring in fertilizer by unit train and then sell the fertilizer wholesale to retailers in a multi-county area.

By: Keith Norman, The Jamestown Sun

The Stutsman County Commission on Thursday approved a five-year tax exemption for a planned bulk dry fertilizer facility planned by Gavilon Grain. The facility is to be located with Gavilon’s grain elevator commonly known as Peavey West in James-town.

The plant would bring in fertilizer by unit train and then sell the fertilizer wholesale to retailers in a multi-county area.

Gavilon had requested a five-year, 100 percent exemption with five additional years of a declining exemption. It also offered to reimburse the county $486,455, the value of the five-year, 100 percent exemption, in exchange for road improvements at the site.

The commission vote was 4-1 to grant the five-year, 100 percent tax exemption with no mention of road work included in the motion. Commissioner Dale Marks was the lone dissenting vote with concerns about what he called “gray areas” concerning the project in the future remaining a wholesale plant.

Much discussion centered on the road work requested by Gavilon.

“The estimates prepared by Interstate Engineering are for about $1.3 million,” said Mike Zimmerman, Stutsman County road superintendent. “That is an estimate of what it would cost to bring the road up to the standards for load limits greater than 80,000 pounds.”

County officials balked at committee to an additional road project even with a portion of it paid up front by Gavilon.

“We have zero funding for road construction for the next five or more years,” said Mark Klose, commission chairman.

Marks suggested Gavilon would need to fund the entire project to make it feasible.

“We’re trying to be competitive,” said Rick Welding, manager for Gavilon. “If we get a quarter inch of rain now some of those roads become unusable.”

Sun reporter Keith Norman can be reached at

(701) 952-8452 or by e-mail at knorman@jamestownsun.com

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