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Tax break for Coca-Cola

South Windsor Provides Tax Break For Coca-

Cola Bottling Company Expansion

A bottling facility at a Coca-Cola plant. (Courant File Photo)

By Peter Marteka pmarteka@courant.com


A corn field will soon be transformed into a distribution center for Coca-Cola Bottling Company of Northern New England, and the town of South Windsor is laying down a welcome mat for the project in the form of a tax break.

Last week, the company announced it will invest $22.6 million in its East Hartford plant and $42 million in a new sales center in South Windsor. The 25-acre property is located at 325 and 359 Ellington Road and was being used to grow corn.

On Monday, the town council unanimously approved a 70 percent tax break for seven years, totaling $341,479 annually, starting when the facility is completed. The town currently collects a reduced tax of approximately $7,000 annually on the 25 acres because it is farmland.

When the property is redeveloped, the value of the land will increase to $2.1 million, with the town collecting approximately $56,000 a year in taxes. While the company will get an annual tax break of 70 percent, or $341,479, the town will receive $125,000 for its 30 percent, Town Manager Matthew B. Galligan said.

Galligan said that personal property for the facility “from day one” will generate $367,848 a year in revenue, bringing the total to approximately $549,000 in new taxes and $4.6 million over a 10-year period. The town would collect $70,000 for the same period if it remained farmland.

“That’s why we promote some of the tax fixing agreements,” he said. “The whole key to this is if we can’t get this done, they [Coca-Cola] go to Needham, Mass. Which means East Hartford would lose 235 jobs. So it’s really two communities working together here to save jobs and create new jobs and create a new distribution center for the area.

“This is kind of a bunch of people working together,” he added, “to make sure that we can get this facility and have them stay here.”

Over the past few years, the town has offered tax breaks to companies that are expanding, such as Aldi, ElectroMethods and Carla's Pasta. The town’s tax partnership program encourages the development and expansion of businesses through tax and other economic incentives. Officials note the goal is “to retain and attract businesses that will generate substantial additional tax revenues and employment opportunities.”

The company plans to break ground on the project later this month.

“This is good for the town,” Mayor M. Saud Anwar said. “This is going to create jobs and help the regional economic development as well as keep some existing jobs, and it’s going to expand and allow us to continue to be a business-friendly town.”

Galligan said the company has been in East Hartford since 1952 and he doesn’t see it moving out anytime soon.

“At this point, the commitment is $22 million down there [East Hartford] and $42 million here,” he said.

“They’ve been a longtime resident of the state and they almost left because they were landlocked [at the East Hartford location] and we stepped in to provide the additional land space.”

Copyright © 2018, Courant Community

This article is related to: East Hartford, The Coca-Cola Company, South Windsor, M. Saud Anwar

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