LUMBERTON — The Robeson County Board of Commissioners on Monday approved incentives package of more than $5.67 million in grants for Sanderson Farms, plus an additional 100 percent tax reimbursement on some construction costs incurred by the company during 2015 and 2016.
Greg Cummings, director of the county’s Industrial Development Commission, said the Mississippi poultry giant is the largest industry ever recruited to do business in Robeson County. He also told The Robesonian the incentives package Sanderson Farms will receive is the largest the county has ever offered.
“The larger the industry, the larger the incentives package,” Cummings said.
Sanderson Farms is constructing a $115 million chicken processing plant about four miles west of St. Pauls, and a $17 million hatchery at the intersection of N.C. 41 and Snake Road in Lumberton. Cummings said that the processing plant is expected to create about 1,000 jobs with the hatchery creating another 75 to 100 jobs.
Cummings briefly outlined the three main incentives offered in the package.
Cummings presented facts from a recent edition of Business N.C. magazine that listed the Sanderson Farms project in Robeson County as one of the five largest economic development projects in the state announced between June 1, 2014, and May 31.
“I want to thank personally you, the commissioners, and county staff who helped us land this project,” Cummings said at the close of his presentation to the board. “This definitely was a team effort. No one person can land a project like this.”
In other business, the commissioners on Monday:
— Approved two conditional-use permit requests to provide for the establishment of two solar farms. According to Dixon Ivey, the county’s zoning administrator, there are more than 30 solar farms scattered throughout the county.
The first conditional-use permit application approved was for a 54-acre tract in a Residential Agricultural District in Wisharts. The applicant was Cedar Grove Solar LLC.
The second conditional-use permit request, by Barker Solar LLC and John P. Barker, was for a 43-acre tract in a Residential Agricultural District in Wisharts.
— Passed a resolution supporting a proposed redistribution plan for state sales tax revenue that would benefit rural and poor counties such as Robeson.
— Heard a brief report from Kristina Cummings, the county’s recycling coordinator, concerning the county’s recent Clean and Green anti-littering efforts.
— Approved a resolution authorizing the Robeson County Housing Authority to enter into a $1,952 contract with the Nelrod Company of Fort Worth, Texas, for a salary study of housing authority employees.
According to Jason King, Robeson County Housing Authority’s interim director, the authority needs the study to determine what the salary range should be for specific jobs.
Bob Shiles can be reached at 910-416-5165.