Many support tax abatements for economic development

Vidorian photo/George Garza

Tad McKee, president of the Stark Foundation was the first of twenty speakers that spoke to the Orange County Commissioners’ Court meeting on Wednesday. McKee spoke out in support of the Orange County Economic Development Corporation.

Vidorian photo/George Garza

The Orange County Commissioners’ Courtroom was packed with an overflow crowd of citizens, business and civic leaders to voice their opinions mostly about Orange County economic development on Wednesday.

According to some observers, the large crowd packed into the Orange County Commissioners’ Courtroom on Wednesday morning for the regular meeting of the Commissioners’ Court came to that meeting to speak to the Court concerning their own opinions about offering tax incentives to attract new industry to the county. Others came to speak about the importance of showing those potential new industries that the citizens support the industry’s willingness to invest in Orange County. And others came to offer their opinions about the job the Orange County Economic Development Corporation Director was doing in negotiating with potential industrial investors in Orange County.

At issue in all of these opinions is potentially as much as a $5.6 billion investment by Chevron Phillips to build a second manufacturing plant in Orange. Now this project is not a done deal by any means. But citizens of Orange County are concerned that a recent declaration by Orange County Judge Dean Crooks questioning the viability of offering property tax incentives to Chevron Phillips and suggesting that other incentives could be offered instead, might be putting a bad face on the County.



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