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Pennsylvania Continuing to Support Job-Creating Economic Development Projects

21 Jan, 2009


From a large, mixed-use development project in suburban Philadelphia to a family owned bed-and-breakfast in Elk County, Pennsylvania is continuing to support job-creating economic development projects throughout the commonwealth, Governor Edward G. Rendell said today.

"These new investments reflect our ongoing commitment to encourage private development in communities large and small, urban and rural, to generate jobs and help us weather the national economic storm," said Governor Rendell, who added that projects approved for funding at yesterday's Commonwealth Financing Authority meeting will create 2,200 new jobs.

Of the loans approved by the CFA was $6 million towards the development of a $516 million "town center" in Malvern that will feature major retail and restaurant chains, a movie theater, apartments and condominiums.

The investment, from CFA's Building PA program, will help make the Uptown Worthington town center, off Morehall Road in the former Worthington Steel Mill, a reality.

Building PA provides real estate fund managers with crucial "gap financing" that can make the difference in the success or failure of a viable development. The commonwealth's funds are matched at least dollar-for-dollar by private equity.

The Chester County Economic Development Co. will initiate the loan to the developer, O'Neill Properties Group. The project is expected to generate more than 4,000 jobs, some 2,000 of which will be new.

Elsewhere, the Commonwealth Financing Authority approved Building PA funding for projects in Bethlehem and Altoona:

-- In Bethlehem, the former Farr's Department Store on West Broad Street will be redeveloped into an Irish pub, a supply-distribution company and a charter bank with the help of a $930,000 Building PA loan. Building the Lehigh Valley Inc., c/o Ashley Development Corp., will initiate the loan for the developer, 2 West Broad Street Development LLP, which says it plans to begin work soon; occupancy is expected by the end of 2009. The $5.7 million project is expected to create more than 50 new jobs.

-- In Altoona, the former SKF USA site, vacant since 2004, will be redeveloped into a supermarket that employs 125-150 people with the help of a $1.5 million Building PA loan toward the $14.5 million project. The Altoona-Blair County Development Corp. is initiating the loan to developers 800 Logan Blvd. LP who were able to address environmental assessment and mitigation issues and re-use the site with the help of funding through the commonwealth's Industrial Sites Reuse program, which helps to redevelop brownfields for productive use.

Additionally, the authority approved a number of loans and a loan guarantee from its First Industries Fund, which is geared toward agriculture and tourism to bolster rural economic development and job creation.

Adams County

-- $150,000 loan to Kevin Holtzinger, doing business as Keholtz Dairy in East Berlin, as part of a $573,000 project to relocate an animal waste facility.

-- $200,000 tourism loan to JayJyoti Corp., doing business as Comfort Suites, as part of a $6.96 million project to build a new hotel in Gettysburg.

Berks County

-- $200,000 agriculture and $285,000 machinery and equipment loan to the W. Raymond and Jenifer K. Hershey dairy farm in Bethel to build a free-stall barn and milking parlor, and buy 225 dairy cows and a bulk storage tank.

Elk County

-- $50,000 tourism loan to Old Charm Bed and Breakfast Inc. for a $201,500 property purchase in St. Marys.

Lancaster County

-- $200,000 agriculture loan to Ephraim F. and Mattie S. Esh for the $575,000 purchase a 69-acre farm in Peach Bottom.

-- $200,000 agriculture loan to Paul L. and Sheryl J. Hess dairy farm toward the $201,500 purchase of 22.6 acres in Drumore.

-- $200,000 agriculture loan to Brian and Annice Landis toward the $710,000 construction of two broiler houses on their broiler farm in Quarryville.

-- $50,000 machinery and equipment loan to Eric D. and Melissa S. Herr towards a $255,000 project to purchase 60 dairy cows and machinery and equipment for their dairy and broiler farm in Lancaster.

-- $200,000 agriculture loan to Eugene and Susan L. Hess to purchase a $418,700, 112-acre daily farm in Marietta.

-- $200,000 agriculture loan to Charles H. and H. Elaine Craig III to build a 332 free-stall facility, a milking parlor and storage area as part of a $2 million project on their home farm in Nottingham.

-- $200,000 agriculture loan to C. Donald and Holly D. Wissler III as part of a $1.2 million project to build a poultry breeder house on their farm in Holtwood.

-- $200,000 agriculture loan to Heidi S. and Stephen L. Hershey and Philip Hershey for a $1.3 million purchase of 80 acres for their dairy farm in Columbia.

-- $200,000 agriculture loan to Chickies Creek Farm LLC layer farm as part of a $3.8 million purchase of 93 acres in Mount Joy

Lebanon County

-- $141,000 agriculture loan to Galen Boyd, doing business as Boydell Farmers Market, to start an on-site farmers market in Lebanon. Total project cost is $291,886.

Luzerne County

-- $200,000 agriculture loan to Barry W. and Diane M. Bloss dairy farm to build a 75-cow free-stall barn and milking parlor in Wapwallopen. Total project cost is $435,000.

Montour County

-- $200,000 tourism loan to Ronald R. and Kim M. Beyer dairy and broiler farm to build two broiler houses in Danville with a total project cost of $549,000.

Northumberland County

-- $200,000 agriculture loan to Matthew J. and Renee M. Hornberger to build a swine finisher barn in Paxinos. The total project cost is $463,000.

-- $150,000 agriculture loan to Shaffer Productions Inc. and P.I.G. Ventures LP hog and crop farm to purchase a 96-acre crop farm in Herndon. The total project cost is $300,000.

Snyder County

-- $200,000 agriculture loan to Shawn and Jennifer Arbogast turkey farm to construct a turkey house in Middleburg with a total project cost of $470,000.

Tioga County

-- $55,000 agriculture loan to Gilbert and Lisa Harris, doing business as Hillcrest Farm and Double H Farm, to convert an existing hog barn into a conventional pen system and to purchase machinery and equipment in Liberty with a total project cost of $110,000.

York County

-- $200,000 agriculture loan to Christopher E. and Rebecca D. Buser construct a hog-finishing barn in York. The total project cost is $431,200.

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