Commission authorizes issuance Of TIF bonds for Charles Pointe

CLARKSBURG – The Harrison County Commission on Wednesday authorized issuance of a series of excise tax increment financing bonds that would allow developers to begin work on a retail development anchored by a home improvement store at Charles Pointe.

Genesis Partners, developer of the Charles Pointe Economic Opportunity Development District in Bridgeport, is seeking financing to begin site development on a 112-acre parcel located near the intersection of W.Va. 279 and Interstate 79, according to Tom Aman of Steptoe & Johnson law firm. Aman serves as the county’s bond attorney.

After sitework, developers would have about 67 acres of developable land at the site, which will be called Charles Pointe Crossing, Aman said.

A Menard’s home improvement store would serve as the anchor for the development, he said.

Developers hope to begin sitework – to include hillside removal, filling of valleys, road construction and installation of public utilities – on May 1.

Groundbreaking on Menard’s, a Wisconsin-based home improvement store chair, is anticipated to occur in March 2020, with a projected opening day in May 221, Aman said.

The facility is expected to be a total of 251,000 square feet, with a 203,000-square-foo building and the remainder consisting of a warehouse and outdoor sales area, Aman said.

The Charles Pointe Economic Opportunity Development Board approved the plan earlier Wednesday, according to County Administrator Willie Parker.

Genesis Partners is in the process of securing a $24.6 million construction loan.

The excise tax increment financing bonds would include A Series A bond of $38 million at a rate of 5.25 percent, a $15.8 million Series B bond at a rate of 7 percent and a $17.6 million Series C bond at a rate of 7 percent, Aman said.

The Series A and B bonds would be underwritten by Stifel, Nicholus & Co. The Harrison County Commission contracted with the company for bond placement an underwriting services related to issuance of bonds for the Charles Pointe Economic Opportunity Development District last summer.

The Series A and B bonds would cover approved project costs, including construction loan repayment, closing costs, capitalized interest and $7.4 million in existing bonds set to mature in about two years, Aman said.

The Series C bond will be set up to provide reimbursement of approved expenses in the event that the other bonds are repaid within a certain time frame.

“It’s a means for the developer, if they have qualifying costs and development occurs as projected and everybody else gets paid, including the A bonds and B bonds and whatever other bonds are out there, then they would get reimbursement of those costs if revenues are available. If revenues aren’t available, they just don’t get paid and bonds are discharged at that point,” Aman said.

Under the tax increment financing bonds, tax revenue generated from the development goes toward repayment of the bonds.

“First and foremost, the 2015 bonds were getting ready to bloom, so we were going to have to either approve or refinance them. Based on the fact that the 2015 (bond) were going to be refinanced, it only makes sense then to continue on and create the opportunity for more revenue for the city and the cunty and the opportunity to create more jobs,” Commissioner Patsy Trecost said.

“As we have to in West Virginia, we’re going to continue to make hills and mountains flat. By creating the flat space in an area that right now, to me, is becoming a center of the state of West Virginia for development in Harrison County and Marion county, it’s a no-brainer.”

According to Watson, the project could translate into a lot of jobs and additional businesses coming in once Menard’s is in place

In other business, the commission approved a bid from Mid-State Chevrolet Buick at $25,335 and $26,927 for Chevy pick-up trucks. The dealership was one of two to bid. Harry Green Chevrolet submitted a bid of $28,736 each, Parker said.

According to Parker, the county will trade in a 2005 Ford Explorer.

The commission also approved a bid for $39,861 from Advantage Technology for computer equipment. Infinite Technology.

Solutions submitted a bid for $47,200, Parker said.