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City developing Honeywell property

Ironton City Council filed two grant applications Monday to develop the Honeywell property, the latest action in an effort to complete an undisclosed city-county economic development project.

Tuesday, November 21, 2000

Ironton City Council filed two grant applications Monday to develop the Honeywell property, the latest action in an effort to complete an undisclosed city-county economic development project.

After more than two hours in executive session, the seven council members unanimously passed a resolution authorizing Mayor Bob Cleary to submit an application for an Appalachian Regional Commission grant.

A separate resolution passed will allow Cleary to submit an application for an Urban Rural Initiatives grant.

The grants will provide the needed monies to acquire and redevelop the former Allied Signal (Honeywell) property in south Ironton, the resolution stated.

The applications require the city to pledge $150,000 in local revenues to match the proposed $100,000 in ARC funding and a separate $125,000 from a proposed Urban Rural Initiatives fund, the resolution stated.

"This is being done to facilitate the purchase of the Honeywell property," Councilman Jesse Roberts said. "These are grants that need to be timely. The mayor has worked hard with state and local officials and he’s responsible for securing the deal. If this money comes, it’s because of him."

Cleary said the project has been in negotiations since early spring.

"We actually started looking at this project last March," he said. "The city is essentially buying 39.5 acres from Honeywell to facilitate the idea of the South Ironton Industrial Park – for $375,000."

He said city and economic development officials deemed the abandoned property to be the "most viable piece of property for industrial development Ironton could own."

"We feel like this whole thing is a good deal," Cleary said. "The bottom line on all of this is to create more jobs. When we sell our first parcel, it should recoup the $150,000 commitment the city has in the project and we’ll own the rest of the property with no debt involved."

And, several tenants are already considering property on the site.

"While we were negotiating the ownership of the property, we were also negotiating with two possible tenants to occupy a portion of the property," he said. "We’ve negotiated the deal, now we are waiting on the final paperwork and the grants to finalize the deal."

Officials are hopeful the deal will be closed by the end of December.

"The state’s commitment seems real positive," Cleary said. "We’ve been hit with a tremendous amount of job loss and it’s created an abundance of qualified workers. Now we will have a place for industry."