Two major planned Iredell County developments are in line to receive millions of dollars in government-approved bonds for their sewer and water lines and other work.
The bonds are expected to move the developments forward and create hundreds of jobs.
An Iredell County government financing authority agreed last week to let the planned Langtree at the Lake and Larkin developments seek state approval for a combined $41million in "recovery zone bonds."
The bonds are part of the federal American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, intended to help reignite the economy. States approve and allocate the bonds.
The developments would obtain private financing for the bonds, so taxpayers wouldn't be at risk if the projects fail, officials said. Still, the county and state have to make sure the projects are fiscally solid enough to be able to obtain the financing, and the developments will create lots of jobs.
Members of the Iredell County Industrial Facilities & Pollution Control Financing Authority unanimously agreed last week to allow the developments to ask the state to approve the bonds.
Larkin is seeking $25million in bonds. The mixed-use development will encompass 1,000 acres off Interstate 77 Exit 45 in Troutman. A boulevard will extend the development north to Exit 49A in Statesville.
Larkin is expected to create at least 1,100 jobs in its first five years, Larkin officials told the authority.
In December, Iredell County gave Langtree at the Lake the go-ahead to seek $9million in the same type of bonds. The developer was back last week to request an additiona $16million, after more bond money was projected to be made available.
The project, at Interstate 77 Exit 31 in south Iredell, is expected to create about 1,900 jobs from 2012 through 2015, Russ Rogerson, executive director of the nonprofit Mooresville/South Iredell Economic Development Corp., told the authority.
The N.C. Department of Commerce and the N.C. Local Government Commission will next consider approving the bonds. The Iredell County Board of Commissioners also will have to schedule a public hearing.
Board is obscure, but vital to approving bond projects
Chances are you've never heard of the Iredell County Industrial Facilities & Pollution Control Financing Authority.
Even though the authority has been around since the 1970s, it meets only occasionally and isn't much in the public eye. But its role is critical to approving bonds for government-related projects.
It has never been more visible than in recent months, as special government-approved bonds became available to private development projects that show they have financing and will create lots of jobs.
The bonds are part of the federal American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, intended to help reignite the nation's economy. States approve and allocate the bonds.
Last fall, Iredell County backed about $9million worth of bonds for the planned $800million Langtree at the Lake community at Interstate 77 Exit 31 in south Iredell. The county also endorsed about $9million for Providencia USA, a Brazilian maker of nonwoven fabrics in West Industrial Park north of Statesville.
The authority last week backed another round of the "recovery zone bonds," including $25million for the planned Larkin mixed-use community in Troutman and another $16million for Langtree at the Lake.
The Iredell County commissioners and the state also must approve the bonds, but they first must pass muster with the authority, a government-appointed panel of local residents.
Former Mooresville newspaper magnate J.D. Chamberlain, 91, headed the authority since its founding until he announced last week that he was relinquishing the chairmanship for health and other reasons. Banker Steve Robinson was elected in his place.
Prospective farmers markets vendors to meet on Thursday
STATESVILLE Vendors and prospective vendors who'd like to sell produce and other items at the Rotary or Thursday Evening farmers markets in Statesville should attend a meeting Thursday at the Iredell County Agriculture Resource Center, 444 Bristol Drive.
Those interested in the Rotary's Monday, Wednesday and Saturday markets will meet at 6 p.m.
Vendors interested only in the Thursday Evening Market in Pecan Park will meet at 7 p.m.
Anyone is welcome at either or both meetings. Rules, guidelines and space assignments will be available for the 2010 season.
No advance registration is necessary.
Details: Ken Vaughn, 704-878-3165, or the extension office, 704-873-0507.
Davidson Horticultural Symposium is March 2
DAVIDSON The Davidson Garden Club will sponsor the 26th Davidson Horticultural Symposium at Davidson College on March 2.
Allan Armitage, who has written more than 400 articles and authored 11 books on garden crops.
Pam Baggett, a freelance writer and photographer who teaches garden writing and formerly owned Singing Springs Nursery in Cedar Grove.
Robin Ripley, a national gardening columnist and co-author of "Grocery Gardening."
W. Gary Smith, who has designed gardens throughout the South and Mid-Atlantic.
William Welch, a University of Texas professor, landscape architect and extension service horticulturist, who authored "Perennial Garden Color," "Antique Roses for the South" and "The Southern Heirloom Garden."
Details: www.davidsonsymposi um.org .