Friday, September 22, 2006

GM to hand over three old factories to Anderson

Friday, September 08, 2006
GM to hand over three old factories to Anderson
Associated Press

ANDERSON, Ind. -- Officials hope General Motors Corp.'s gift of three empty factories that once employed thousands will help the city's economic recovery.

The Detroit-based automaker is donating the plants and more than 300 acres of property to the city. The city hopes to market the former industrial sites to new developers.

"(GM's) cooperation gives us the ability to bring new investors, to have control over buildings and land," said Rob Sparks,chairman of the city's Board of Public Works. "This will be a partnership as we try to redevelop, and we're thankful to work with them."

The city about 25 miles northeast of Indianapolis once had some 27,000 GM workers, but only 700 employees at Delphi Corp. -- which spun off from GM in 1999 -- remain.

City officials have been negotiating with GM to take possession of the properties for seven years. GM already donated one former plant to the city, which sold it for $3 million, providing the seed money for a small business incubator.

GM has agreed to continue to clean up environmental contamination and will keep property with the worst environmental problems, city spokeswoman Connie Smith said.

Once GM hands over the buildings to the Redevelopment Commission, the automaker won't have to pay property taxes on them. Those taxes total more than $1 million a year.

Information from: The Herald Bulletin,

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