By Cara Zarecor
Dyer Industrial Park could soon be home to a company that would bring approximately 40 new jobs to the area, according to Kingsley Brock, Economic Development director for Gibson County, who was a visiting speaker at the Dyer Mayor and Board of Aldermen meeting on July 27.
“I’m not going to say much about this, but we are working on a confidential project that looks promising for Dyer,” Brock said. “It could lead to probably 40 jobs. We are trying to close the deal with the company, and I’m working with the company to apply for state incentives and it has to remain confidential until the deal is closed and until the state has decided if they’re going to put training money into the project or how they’re going to participate, and the same thing with TVA.”
Brock has been the Economic Development director for Gibson County for three years. The expertise he has brought comes from a years-long resume of having worked for both the Tennessee Department of Economic Development and also for the Jackson Regional Partnership, which sought economic development for nine area counties. He is excited to have been a part of “landing the Tyson deal,” as he put it, which is a $400 million dollar investment for the company but also about a $150 million for the farming community in building all the chicken houses then hiring people to come in and work them.
Brock has been working closely with Mayor Chris Younger and City Recorder Nathan Reed and attends every Dyer Industrial Development Board meeting. Together, they’ve spent the past two years and $30,000 in land studies and testing getting a 32-acre parcel of land within the industrial park certified through a program called “Select Tennessee.”
Now that the land is certified through the state, one of Brock’s jobs is to market the site to companies through a match-making type process. He searches for then targets companies that could benefit most from locating in Gibson County while carefully considering the employment benefits and salary desires that would also most benefit prospective employees who live here.
Brock’s desire was to finally come and meet each Dyer alderperson and says he will be back within a couple of months to show the professional presentation he’s created for the site and to give updates on any progress that has occurred with the confidential project.
In the mayor’s report, Younger said that he’d like to take some time to honor Dyer City Attorney Billy Raymond Barron before filling his position. Barron passed away on July 24.
A unanimous vote was carried to donate an unused service truck to the Henderson County Fire Department. Captain Ryan Shanklin urged the alderpersons to agree to the donation after Henderson County’s department had been generous enough to donate 23 air packs to the Dyer Fire Department earlier in the year, saving the department thousands of dollars.
Also, in the Fire Department Report, a unanimous vote was made to accept Ledarius Osler back as a firefighter.
Street Superintendent Dale Carroll asked the board to consider making a purchase of a new zero turn mower. Younger asked him to do some price research and dealership acceptance of state contracts and it would be discussed at the next board meeting. The cost for the new mower is expected to be $13,000.
In new business, Younger urged the board to pass a motion to charge organized ball tournaments a $200 refundable deposit on their use of the city’s fields.
“The teams can pick up their check at City Hall or we can tear it up, but it’s their responsibility to clean it up,” Younger said. “The city crew doesn’t need to be doing this. Any deposit kept would be payment to compensate for city employees’ time.”
The board unanimously voted to pass the measure, as Younger gave Carroll the obligation to make the call on whether or not the field is clean after each use.
Also, in new business, the board passed a motion to pay Thompson Machinery $15,000 for repair of an A/C condenser on a backhoe.
It was all “ayes” to pay accounts payable for the city’s expenses amounting to $26,288 for the date of July 27, and afterward the meeting was adjourned.