New Tyson plant gets thumbs up

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Tyson Foods' plans to build a new $136 million plant in Green Forest have the green light from Carroll County.

After a public hearing on Friday, May 20, Carroll County Judge Sam Barr signed documents authorizing the issuance of $124 million in bonds for the project, as well as an agreement to abate 60 percent of the property taxes on the new plant for 10 years. Technically, Tyson won't pay any property taxes on the new plant for its first decade; instead the company will make a "payment in lieu of taxes" equal to 40 percent of the property taxes that otherwise would be collected by the county.

Friday's meeting, held in order to allow public comments on the bond issue and tax abatement, was attended mostly by Tyson employees and local elected officials. No public comments were made.

The new plant would cover more than 200,000 square feet across the street from Tyson's existing Green Forest plant. Plans call for the facilities to be connected by a corridor. Improvements would include new equipment and production lines, as well as processes and technology designed to benefit food safety, quality and workplace safety. Construction could begin as early as summer and the project would be completed in late 2017. Tyson officials say that once the plant is completed, it will create about 85 full-time jobs.

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