PEP Offers Incentive Loan for Proposed Packing Company



Prowers Economic Prosperity (PEP) board members voted unanimously to loan $20,000 to Prairieland Packing, LLC of Wiley to help fund the development of a meat packing operation in that community.  The action was taken during their monthly meeting on Tuesday, November 6th at the Lamar Truck Plaza restaurant.

The loan is offered on the contingency of the creation of at least 13 jobs by the end of the first year of the loan agreement and the repayment of the loan over a four year period which would be secured by a personal guarantee. The development of the facility is being initiated by Curtis Tempel of Wiley.  The agreement also calls for the owner to become a member of PEP for a three year period at a minimum of $2,500 level with a seat on the PEP board of directors upon final loan repayment.

Board member, Anne Marie Crampton, introduced Cheryl Sanchez as Prowers County’s Small Business Development Center’s consultant who will be headquartered at the SBDC office at Lamar Community College with PEP Director, Eric Depperschmidt, who is finalizing his certification with the Business Development Center. Sanchez, who has been a former business owner and has an extensive background in education at the college, explained her new role, “I hope my experiences will be of value with local residents who hope to develop or augment a business in our community.”  Her office hours at the LCC Administration Building will be from 10am to 2pm each Thursday, and will be available for scheduled meetings at 719-336-1540.

PEP President Aaron Leiker and Lawrence Brase, PEP Treasurer, reviewed the 2019 budget, noting there will be some belt-tightening measures taken in 2019, in addition to the ones enacted in the latter part of this year, including the reduction in personnel. Leiker noted reductions in such areas as business supplies, a change in phone service and travel while Brase explained that some cutbacks will also occur in dues, fees and subscriptions.

Brase said the estimated income for PEP for 2019 will be $143,000, based on contributions of $55,000 from partners and $78,000 from government entities as well as a $10,000 grant from CSBC. As part of the budget measure, Leiker received board approval on a request from the executive committee to use $15,000 from the Incentive Fund as a loan to the General Fund to get through the remainder of the year with the expectation the $15,000 will be refunded into the account in January, 2019.  Board Member, Brenda May of TBK Bank, noted the bank, which had been handling the Greater Lamar Improvement Company (GLIC) funds for several decades, make earlier plans to transfer the $14,000 in the account to PEP which will help cover the transfer into the General Fund.

Depperschmidt provided a brief update on business development prospects including interest in the hotel feasibility study projected by PEP earlier this year. “The City is providing an incentive package for review by a potential development firm.  There is no specific action on their part at this time, just the preliminary proposal and the hotel representatives will review it and we expect future discussion with them.”  He also noted the PEP board will hold a strategic planning meeting on January 11, 2019 and review the PUMA study which had advised changes to the former PCDI group allowing for the transition to the current PEP organization.

The next PEP meeting has been planned for December 4th in Wiley.
By Russ Baldwin

Filed Under: City of LamarCity of WileyCollegeConsumer IssuesCountyEconomyFeaturedTransportation


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