Tuesday, Feb. 21, 2023–5:49 p.m.
-David Crowder-WRGA News-
Following repeated acts of vandalism at the former Northwest Georgia Regional Hospital property off Division Street — now known as the Battey Business Center, security cameras are being installed.
Vandals have been cutting the fence to get onto the property. Then they knock out a window or pry open a door of the chapel and other buildings on the campus.
“We will be getting some cameras and installing them,” said Rome-Floyd County Development Authority President and CEO Missy Kendrick. “We are hoping that the presence of law enforcement officers, who are allowed to train there free of charge, might deter some of this.”
Kendrick added that having broken out windows and cut fences does not show well as the site is marketed to the film industry and other businesses.
“We don’t want to tear them down before it’s time to tear them down,” she added. “So, we will get something in place to get that taken care of.”
Kendrick told the development authority Tuesday that filming will be taking place at the site in March.
The development authority received a $500,000 federal grant in May. The grant funds will be used for, among other things, environmental cleanup assessment and planning purposes for sites like the former hospital property.
The call for proposals brought in seven bidders, and GEI Consultants was awarded the contract.
Even with the site in its current state, the authority is seeking to recruit new manufacturers to locate on the site. There’s also the potential that nearby industries could choose to expand using the available property.
Development authority gets update on tax abatement reports
Annual PILOT agreement reports are due by Mar. 6.
All companies that are under the Payment in Lieu of Taxes agreements with the development authority submit the reports each year, keeping everyone on the same page regarding their tax abatements as well as the number of jobs they have created and capital investments they have made to date.
“This is to ensure that they are keeping their commitments in order to receive the incentives, Kendrick said. “Those have started going out and some have started coming back in.”
Once the reports are all in, there will be a meeting with the tax commissioner and the tax assessor, attorneys, and the city and county to let them know where all of the PILOT agreements stand.
“It gives up an opportunity, without fail, to show that all the industries that are under an abatement plan are actually creating more jobs and investing more than they actually commit to do,” Kendrick said. “It also gives us an opportunity to brag on those who are investing and creating jobs.”