Committee will consider help to keep Folger plant
A Kansas City Council committee will consider plans on Oct. 22 for public assistance to retain The Folger Coffee Co.'s plant Downtown.
The Planning, Zoning and Economic Development Committee's recommendation will go to the City Council on Oct. 23.
Al Figuly, executive director of the Planned Industrial Expansion Authority, said Monday that Folger could qualify for tax breaks on equipment purchases to update the plant at 701 Broadway if the City Council approves the authority's request for a redevelopment area.
The city could issue Chapter 100 bonds to buy equipment that would be leased to Folger. The company's lease payments would retire the bonds. Folger wouldn't pay sales and property taxes on the equipment while the city owns it.
Folger officials couldn't be reached for comment.
In August, a company official said the plant is seeking a new production contract from an undisclosed source that would add 50 to 85 jobs in Kansas City.
Folger's multistory building employs about 75 people and has been running around 15 percent of capacity since the company's owner, Cincinnati-based Procter & Gamble Co. (NYSE: PG), shifted most of its production to a larger Folger plant in New Orleans that employs about 600 people.
About 225 people previously worked for Folger in Kansas City.
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This building is prime real estate. It seems there are better uses for it than having a factory that runs at only 15% capacity. Obviously losing jobs would be a bad thing, but in another form, the building could provide much more than 75 jobs.
I must admit that I'm not a coffee drinker, but the smell of coffee in downtown is great.