York Co. Council hears chemical company plans for $3.1M expansion

jzou@heraldonline.comJanuary 21, 2014 

— A German-based chemical company located in Rock Hill is planning a $3.1 million expansion that will create 17 jobs within five years, according to a memo submitted to the York County Council.

The council approved a measure Tuesday night to allow county staff to apply for a $100,000 state economic grant to support the expansion of Pulcra Chemicals, located in the former IsoChem building in Rock Hill’s Airport Industrial Park.

The grant would provide for infrastructure improvements the company may need in moving forward with the upgrade such as the installation of additional public utilities.

Pulcra Chemicals, which specializes in producing chemicals for the textile industry, moved its Charlotte headquarters to Rock Hill in 2010 with the promise of a $2.6 million investment into the existing plant and the creation of 15 new jobs. At the time, total staff for the company was 45 employees.

In return for its move to the county, the company has paid only school taxes the past four years, avoiding county or city property taxes.

The 2010 agreement between the company and the county amounted to a 45 percent savings for the company in tax breaks until 2015, The Herald has reported.

According to the memo, which was addressed to the state Department of Commerce, the planned expansion is “competitive with other states and that without the council’s assistance, this project will not locate in South Carolina.”

The council also approved a fee in lieu of taxes agreement with Project Rainbow, a currently undisclosed business partnership with the county. There will be two more council readings before the agreement is finalized with full company details.

That particular agreement is expected to result in a $2.5 million investment into an existing county facility in return for county tax breaks. Council Chairman Britt Blackwell said the details of the agreement will be made public by the third public reading.

New fire substation

The council also signed off on a contract to allow Riverview Rural Tax District to purchase a 1.2 acres for a forthcoming fire substation.

The tax district will pay $210,000 to Clover Community Bank for a parcel located on Grant Farm Drive in Fort Mill near Grace Presbyterian Church, according to the contract.

The Riverview Volunteer Fire District is headquartered on Harris Road in Fort Mill — an area that has seen increasing residential development for its proximity to Charlotte.

Other fire departments in the area, such as Flint Hill and Fort Mill, are looking to increase service coverage with more personnel and are in the process of constructing additional substations.

Jie Jenny Zou •  803-329-4062

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