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County industrial board OKs Starbucks deal

By Sara McManamy-Johnson sjohnson@lebanondemocrat.com • Dec 17, 2015 at 5:39 PM

Starbucks’ new distribution center in Wilson County is one step closer to reality.

Wilson County’s Industrial Development Board approved a tax-abatement deal Thursday for the roughly 687,000-square-foot facility.

“The structure [of the deal] is very similar to the Amazon deal you approved in 2011,” Mark Smith, an attorney with Miller & Martin representing Starbucks and Duke Realty, told board members.

Under the deal, the county will forgo 100 percent of the taxes due on the $24-million building and 90 percent of the taxes due on $5 million worth of personal property, such as equipment, for six years. 

The industrial development board will retain ownership of the property for those six years, after which time the property will transfer back to Starbucks and Duke Realty and taxes will be payable.

According to G.C. Hixson, executive director of the Joint Economic & Community Development Board of Wilson County, Starbucks will save $1,590,898 in taxes over the course of the six years.

The 10 percent Payment in Lieu of Taxes payment will be due Jan. 1.

Thursday’s step was among the last before the coffee giant starts operations at the facility, which is located along State Route 840 off Central Pike.

According to Hixson, the facility will replace Starbucks’ existing distribution center in Rutherford County, which is roughly half the size of the new one.

He said the company plans to employ 297 full-time workers at the Wilson County facility, with 175 of those being new hires and 122 being transferred employees from the Rutherford County location. The company also plans to hire about 125 temporary employees, according to Hixson.

He said Starbucks plans to begin operations at the new facility by the end of February.  

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