Augusta Economic Developers Approve $940 Million in Bonds
The Development Authority of Richmond County approved $940 million worth of industrial revenue bonds and bond proposals on Thursday, The Augusta Chronicle reported.
Officials said the bonds would help five major employers – including Doctors Hospital and FedEx – expand local operations.
The bonds – which obligate the borrower, not the county or its taxpayers – are primarily used as economic development incentives to attract new industry and entice existing industry to expand.
The largest of the five bond issues was $672.5 million for an existing industry identified only as “Project Beam.”
Authority attorney Robert Hagler said the bond would fund the company’s multiyear expansion project, mainly equipment purchases.
Two of the bond issues were for previously announced economic development projects: the $130 million addition of a coffee-roasting facility at Augusta’s Starbucks plant and the $100 million expansion of Doctors Hospital’s emergency room and main hospital buildings.
The other two included a $30 million bond for International Paper to improve its wastewater systems and $8.5 million for a FedEx-affiliated developer to relocate the delivery company’s downtown distribution center to an industrial park near the intersection of Tobacco Road and Mike Padgett Highway.
Authority Executive Director Walter Sprouse, whose retirement was announced at the end of the meeting’s closed-door legal session, said the bonds’ dollar value represented a “record” amount for a single day.