A North Carolina brick company and JAC Electric Cooperative are asking for Clay County’s help in constructing a $1.3 million substation to supply energy for a proposed manufacturing facility southeast of Henrietta.
Commissioners approved a request during a special meeting Monday, July 21 to act as an intermediary for a Texas Capital Fund grant of $750,000 to assist in construction of the substation. Triangle Brick will pay for the remaining expense, allowing the substation to be built at no cost to the county.
In a public hearing held Thursday, Kim Hooper, general manager of JAC, said the project is a win-win for both companies and Clay County.
The substation is needed to supply the proposed brick manufacturing plant with electricity, as well as provide enough power for future development of the area. The structure will be on the southwest side of the Triangle Brick property, located on Hwy. 287 approximately 10 miles southeast of Henrietta. The manufacturing plant will be located on a 994-acre parcel that was once part of the Hapgood Ranch.
Triangle Brick has already made “contributions in kind” to JAC in an effort to get the substation project underway.
“I will say that we have received some money from Triangle Brick because we wanted to make sure that this project was viable before committing the resources to it,” said Hooper.
Traylor and Associates, a governmental consulting company, will assist the county in applying for and administrating grant funds. Clay County will enter into an inter-local agreement with JAC. While the electric coop handles construction of the substation, Clay County will administer funds thought the Texas Department of Agriculture.
“We want the county to be as involved as it wants to be involved, and at the same time, we want you to be protected,” Gary Traylor, president of Traylor and Associates, told commissioners on Thursday.
Of the grant funds, $700,000 will be used in the construction of the substation, while $50,000 is reserved for administration costs.
Traylor noted that Texas Capital Fund grants are performance based, requiring companies repay a portion of the grant if a specified number of jobs are not created. Triangle Brick will be required to post a performance bond, put funds in escrow or provide the state with a letter of credit to secure funds. The manufacturing facility is expected to employ as man as 50 area residents.
On Monday, July 28, commissioners are expected to offer a tax incentive package to Triangle Brick.