News From Terre Haute, Indiana

May 22, 2013

County Council votes $78K toward rail spur

The Tribune-Star

TERRE HAUTE — County officials voted Tuesday night to make good on a 2011 promise to help improve a railroad spur just north of Terre Haute for Menard Inc.

The Vigo County Council, without opposition, passed an ordinance dedicating more than $78,000 toward a $500,000 economic incentive package for the Eau Claire, Wisc.-based home improvement retailer.

The improvements, to which the City of Terre Haute has pledged $75,000, will provided railroad service to a new, $12-million Menards distribution facility.

The Indiana Economic Development Corp. is kicking in the lion’s share of the funding for the improvements – $350,000 – with the understanding the local county and city governments will also contribute.

The county’s $78,000 is coming from Vigo County’s Economic Development Income Tax (EDIT) fund, county officials said. The contribution from the City of Terre Haute is also EDIT money.

Any railroad construction costs beyond the $500,000 will be covered by Menard Inc., economic development officials have stated.

Menard Inc. is adding the new 164,000-square-foot distribution center to its existing block and truss manufacturing complex near 13th Street and Haythorne Avenue just across the city/county line in Vigo County. The distribution center is expected to create about 80 new jobs paying an average hourly wage of more than $11.50.

Menard Inc. operates 270 stores in more than a dozen states in the central U.S. The company is one of the top 50 privately held companies in the U.S., according to Forbes.

n The County Council also voted Tuesday evening to help the Vigo County health department better face the upcoming mosquito season. The department asked the council to transfer $13,000 from a supply account to “Mosquito Control Help,” to allow the Health Department hire seasonal staff to help control the county’s mosquito population this season. The transfer passed the council unanimously.