Gray County Commissioners receive tax abatement presentation from Keystone Tower Systems

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The Gray County Commissioners Court met on Monday morning for a regularly-scheduled meeting.

Early in the meeting, the Commissioners received a presentation from Keystone Towers, Inc. and the Pampa Economic Development Corporation concerning a potential tax abatement for the business.

Vanessa Buzzard, attorney for the PEDC Board of Directors, said in November the County had approved a reinvestment zone for Keystone, which was a prerequisite to set up the tax abatement.

“I have filed an application on behalf of Keystone attaching the proposed abatements,” Buzzard said. “Next month on Sept. 1, there will be a public hearing to consider and vote on this matter.”

Abatements are limited to 10-year periods and Buzzard said Keystone is asking for 100 percent abatement for the first five years, 50 percent abatement for two more years and then 25 percent for the final three years.

“The abatement property would be new improvements and include permanent improvements to the real estate, their equipment (not including inventory),” Buzzard said.

Leah Custine, Director of Engineering Operations for Keystone, then gave a presentation to the Commissioners.

“We are largely on-track to open,” Custine said. “This summer we started with the deployment. That was our goal, to get down here and get the modules.”

Custine added the spiral mill is fully assembled, but is not operating yet because of the amount of automation built into the system.

“Mechanically, the entire mill is assembled and we have flipped the switch on some sub-processes,” Custine said. “But it’s a matter of getting all of it to work together and fully integrated. That’s the part that takes the longest.”

Custine then went into a photo slideshow highlighting the work that has been made on the plant so far.

The Commissioners also approved the following items:

Consider minutes of the previous Meeting

• Pay Bills as Approved by the County Auditor

• Renewing Guidelines for Granting Tax Abatements in the Re-Investment Zone Created in the Jurisdiction of Gray County Texas

• Change in Clyde Carruth Pavilion Contract. The change was made in the wording to allow for alcohol to be served at Pavilion events with minors present, as long as said minors are not in consumption.

• Contracting with a Surveyor and Appraiser for the Sale of Surplus Real Property for the Precinct 4 Fuel Depot in McLean

• Appointment of Ken Fields as Gray County Hearing Examiner

• Accept Judge Karen Goodman’s CLE’s

• Extending County Emergency Declaration. Commissioners Jeff Haley and Lake Arrington voted against this item.

The following items were tabled:

• Clarendon College 2021-2022 Budget

• Sheriff and Constable Fees Report

• Imposition of Optional Fees for CY2022 (Department of Public Safety)

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