Snohomish County Executive Aaron Reardon is recommending the county distribute $9 million of its American Recovery and Reinvestment Act bond allocation to three companies for the creation of new jobs. The county also has released a second request for proposals for nearly $11 million still available.
Following an advisory committee review and Reardon’s recommendation, the Snohomish County Council is expected to approve bond funding to three companies for capital improvements in Everett, Sultan and Arlington.
Together, more than 200 full-time jobs will be created.
“Growing and retaining jobs is our first priority,” Reardon said. “The lower interest rates and longer terms offered by the Recovery Zone Facility Bonds give businesses the incentive they need to start or expand now rather than later.”
Specifically, Kimberly Clark Worldwide will be offered $5 million in bonds to convert existing pulp mill streams into fuel-grade ethanol, producing 6 to 8 million gallons of ethanol annually. This production would replace up to 8 million gallons of fossil fuels with renewable cellulosic ethanol. It also would eliminate 60,000 tons of fossil fuel carbon dioxide, increasing the county’s clean technology and lowering its carbon footprint.
In Sultan, Terra Investment Group will use $2.8 million to build Miranda’s Market, part of a larger complex called Sultan Village – a three-story mixed-use development including a restaurant and lounge, RV park, office, game room, retail store, meeting space and third-floor condominiums. Sultan city officials say the project will establish a retail center for commercial and recreational tourism, improving economic development in the Sky Valley area.
Finally, PB Associates will use $1.2 million to construct a new 15,000-square-foot building expansion for Cascade Aircraft Services, which produces bullet-proof cockpit doors and other aerospace parts. The expansion will allow the aerospace manufacturer the opportunity to extend its reach into the global aerospace market.
“These three companies represent an expansion of industries most important to the long-term sustainability of our county – aerospace, clean technology and tourism,” Reardon said. “The jobs created by these businesses offer new opportunities for a diverse range of professional, skilled and unskilled laborers.”
The $20 million in Recovery Zone Bonds for local companies is part of a larger bond program that can be used to fund public and private capital improvements that promote economic development and job growth throughout the county. Called the “ReCAP Initiative,” the extremely low-interest bond program focuses exclusively on capital projects such as essential public facilities and business infrastructure rather than on providing additional funding for county programs and services.
The county’s Economic Development Division is soliciting proposals for a second round of funding up to $11 million in bond money. Private-sector businesses assume full responsibility for payment of this bond debt, but funds will be available for capital improvements in different sectors including the aerospace and biotech industries as well agricultural improvements and renewable energy projects.
Snohomish County plans to use another $13 million in Recovery Zone Bonds to complete capital improvements of certain public facilities, including the Snohomish County Fairgrounds, and public-safety roads projects. Both will provide temporary and permanent jobs while stimulating growth throughout the county.
For more information on the program, contact Donna Ambrose at 425.388.3219