Friday, December 01, 2000

Firm likely to bring 20 jobs to city

Mason council OK'd tax package for new facility

By Kevin Aldridge
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        MASON — A Virginia-based company is expected to bring as many as 20 jobs to the new, 180-acre Mason Enterprise Park on Ohio 741 after receiving a tax abatement package this week.

        PenCorp, a manufacturer of heavy-duty transportation lifting systems, plans to expand its operations by building a $1.3 million, 30,000-square-foot facility in Mason. The 27-year-old, privately owned company plans to invest about $750,000 in machinery, equipment and inventory.

        City Council this week unanimously approved (7-0) a 100 percent tax abatement for five years on the value of the new building. The deal is worth more than $100,000 for five years.

        Mason City Schools will receive an annual compensation of $5,300 for the term of the abatement.

        PenCorp will locate an initial 20 jobs within three years at an average salary of $40,000.

        Robert Penenburgh, president of PenCorp, said he was excited about the prospect of moving to Ohio's second-fastest-growing city.

        “We think this will be a great environment for us,” Mr. Penenburgh said. “We are anxious to get the shovels in the ground.”

        In other business, council approved a revised preliminary plat application for the Avalon Farms subdivision. The 70-acre tract east of Ohio 741 is the newest upscale community to bloom in Mason.

        Developers have revised their plans to include 65 single-family lots on the land instead of 49 as originally projected. The subdivision will feature spacious two-story homes on one acre landscaped lots approaching $400,000 each. It would be the second-most-expensive housing option in the city behind The Heritage Club, which has an average selling price of about $900,000.

        Council also approved increases in the cost of season passes for the Lou Eves Municipal Pool. Starting next year, an adult pass will cost $59 (up from $56); a child, senior or disabled person pass will be $36 (up from $34), and family passes will cost $106 (up from $104).

        Daily pool admission costs did not increase. Pool rates are based on projected revenues, expenses and attendance.

        “We believe this still is a great value for family fun in Mason and the price increase ensures the pool will continue to pay for itself,” City Manager Scot Lahrmer said.

        Mr. Lahrmer said the jump in season pass prices was due to the fact the pool operated at a deficit of $39.58 this year. The slight loss was attributed to rising operating costs and a small decrease in attendance related to a cooler summer, he said. It was the first time the pool finished a season in the red in its six-year history.

        City leaders also approved the sale of a 1998 doublewide trailer to Mason resident Michael Siders for $23,177. The trailer had served as a temporary firehouse while construction of Station 52 on Cedar Village Drive was under way. Mr. Siders was the highest bidder at a recent city auction.


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