Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Governor Beshear publicly signs landmark business incentives bill in Owensboro

OWENSBORO, Ky. (Aug. 12, 2009) – Accompanied by community and business leaders in Owensboro, Gov. Steve Beshear today took part in a bill signing for House Bill 3, which includes new and expanded business incentive programs to encourage job growth and capital investment in Kentucky.

“This landmark legislation demonstrates Kentucky’s willingness to adapt to current economic conditions by updating the state’s economic incentive toolbox to reflect the needs of both new and existing businesses,” said Gov. Beshear. “We are committed to keeping our economic incentive programs on the cutting edge.”

The Incentives for a New Kentucky bill, sponsored by Rep. Tommy Thompson of Owensboro, streamlines and modernizes Kentucky’s business incentive programs including the consolidation of four long-standing programs, Kentucky Rural Economic Development Act, Kentucky Industrial Development Act, Kentucky Jobs Development Act, and Kentucky Economic Opportunity Zone Act, into a single, more flexible tax incentive program called the Kentucky Business Investment (KBI) Program.

The Governor chose the Owensboro River Park Center as a venue, since the facility has been successful in attatracting Broadway production companies assembling shows on the stage in Owensboro. House Bill 3 will provide incentives for creative industry development for programs like the one at the River Park Center as well as incentives for films and television production.

Monday, August 3, 2009

EDC Receives Five Proposals for Downtown Convention Center Hotel

Five proposals have been received by the EDC from private development groups willing to invest significant private dollars into a downtown hotel attached to the publicly funded downtown Owensboro convention/ events center. The proposals come from nationally respected development groups that have access to significant capital for private investment.

Nationally known and respected hotel flags are included in each proposal willing to operate a franchise in downtown Owensboro; the flags include Hilton, Sheraton, Marriott, Hampton Inn, and Holiday Inn. All proposals are willing to provide full service, convention class hotels with between 150 and 250 rooms, based on market analysis. There are local development groups and service providers involved in more than one of the proposals. Several developers have pledged to use local labor and contractors provided they are competitively priced.

The EDC will be facilitating the process of due diligence with a committee of staff members including the city and county government. The committee will be making a recommendation to the Owensboro City Commission by late fall. A development agreement could be in place by the end of the year.