EDC hears brief business update

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by A.C. Hall

Last week the White Settlement Economic Development Corporation held a short meeting and heard about some business developments in the City.  EDC Director Jim Ryan gave his monthly report, saying that a company that deals in materials and embroidery goods has shown interest in purchasing and renovating the old Dollar General location on White Settlement Road.  Ryan said the company will set up retail space in the building if the deal goes through.

Ryan also spoke about the old Conn’s building along Cherry Lane, explaining that a costume shop has opened up there.  The business is only open temporarily as they sell costumes and Halloween themed decorations.

Other business updates included a Sept. 22 ribbon cutting at the Region 11 Schools building, a new Affordable Insurance office that has opened on Cherry Lane, and progress being made on a new hotel behind Northern Tool on West Freeway.  This is the second hotel the builder has constructed in the city recently, and Ryan said the builder has expressed interest in building a third hotel in White Settlement once this one is completed.

Giving the financial update, City Manager Linda Ryan spoke about some of the money in the 2013 budget that wasn’t expended and was moved to the 2014 budget.  She told the EDC that their finances are in good shape but commented on some of the obligations the EDC has with their money that is limiting how much they can spend on other things.

“As we go forward, I know we’ve got to find ways to maybe save more money in one way so we have more for economic development,” Linda Ryan said.

Continuing a trend from recent months, Ryan also had good news about the sales tax, saying the EDC should end up taking in around $75,000 more in sales tax than they estimated.