About 50 Jobs to be Retained

By Jann Wiswall

An unnamed international firm is looking to purchase an unnamed Olean manufacturing company, and the Cattaraugus County Industrial Development Agency (CCIDA) board of directors is preparing for the eventuality by authorizing a public hearing to be scheduled as soon as the firm’s application for tax benefits is received.

As explained by CCIDA Executive Director Corey Wiktor at the IDA’s board meeting on Oct. 21, the IDA has been working through an intermediary for the potential buyer, who does not want any information to go public until the Olean company’s employees are notified. By all accounts, Wiktor said, all 50 or so existing jobs will be retained.

Wiktor characterized the project as having the potential to be a $20 million deal with added employment and expansion into a new product line.

The IDA is preparing its paperwork in advance in order to be able to move quickly once the firm’s application for tax-exempt loans and other benefits is received. While the IDA’s board agreed that the process is unusual, it authorized Wiktor to schedule the public hearing without calling a special board meeting for that purpose. However, Wiktor will call a special board meeting to discuss the substantive issues of the sale.

If the deal goes through, the firm expects to inform employees of the purchase and close on the property by the end of the year.

In ongoing business, the board approved the Final SEQR and Approving Resolutions for the applications for tax benefits from HoliMont, Inc. and Mallory’s Auto Body, Inc. Public hearings on both projects were held; there were no comments from the public on either.

The board also approved a resolution authorizing conveyance of a lease agreement and Payment in Lieu of Tax (PILOT) to Christopher Napoleon, who is purchasing MarkJon Properties, LLC.  MarkJon entered into an agreement with the IDA in 2010.

The October meeting served as the board’s official annual meeting, during which the board approved its 2015 meeting schedule and elected officers to the CCIDA, its audit and governance committees and the Capital Resource Corporation (CRC). The full slate of officers can be found on the IDA’s web site.

The board also approved a preliminary 2015 budget with changes.

The next meeting of the CCIDA will be held on Dec. 9, 2014, at 11:15 a.m. in the IDA offices at 9 E. Washington St. in Ellicottville.