The San Francisco based company that’s building a massive warehouse and distribution center in north-central Iowa will be getting $4.2 million in tax credits and a $170,000 forgivable loan from the State of Iowa.
The identity of the company had been kept a secret until Thursday and this morning, the Iowa Economic Development Authority board awarded McKesson Corporation the state incentives. McKesson is a pharmaceutical drug distributor and the company’s $65 million project in Clear Lake is expected to create 164 jobs.
Chad Schreck, with the North Iowa Corridor Economic Development Corporation, says closing the deal is “huge” for Cerro Gordo County – which has experienced a decline in population.
“Anytime you can bring 160 new jobs to an area, that is definitely a strong encouragement to bring new people into a community. That’s the number one thing, but obviously the investment and fiscal impact is huge,” Schreck said. “Ideally, it will bring in new people. We have a low unemployment rate of about 4.4-percent, so there are definitely some people there (to fill the jobs), but we’ll need to bring new people in as well.”
McKesson is ranked 15th on the Fortune 100 list. For over a year, the firm had remained anonymous – even though the company was seeking millions of dollars in loans and rebates from the state, Cerro Gordo County and the City of Clear Lake. Schreck believes, despite the secrecy, most residents supported those officials who were working to lure the company to the area.
“The leadership asked them to trust them and said ‘this is the only way this is going to get done and if we don’t live up to this end of the agreement, they’re gone.’ It’s pretty hard to look people in the eye and say we just lost 164 jobs and $65 million in investment in our community over ultimately what I think was a pretty small matter if you look at the information they did know,” Schreck said.
For the past year, about the only information released about the project was that it involved a Fortune 100 company. The 340,000-square-foot warehouse under construction in Clear Lake should be operational by May 2016. In addition to the project in Clear Lake, the IEDA board today awarded financial assistance and tax benefits to seven other companies around the state planning expansion projects. Those projects — in Dubuque, Burlington, Ankeny, Sioux City, Ottumwa — are expected to create 553 new jobs.
Here’s more information: www.iowaeconomicdevelopment.com/NewsDetails/6092