MACOMB TOWNSHIP — The Board of Trustees unanimously granted Sterling Die and Engineering a six-year, personal-property tax abatement at its Dec. 12 meeting.
The company will be investing $1.4 million in new equipment throughout that time period — more than $800,000 of which has already been spent. SDE plans to spend another $600,000 by the end of 2015, according to paperwork SDE filed with the township. With the investment, the company plans to add another four full-time jobs throughout the next two years.
Lawrence Dloski, the township’s legal counsel, said because of the investment, SDE would normally be eligible under state law for a four-year abatement. But SDE President Donna Wisniewski requested the board extend the abatement another two years.
“Because of the high demands in our industry, we continue to look for cost reductions, as well as ways to diversify our customer base,” wrote Wisniewski in a letter to the board. “This additional investment will allow us to (move) forward in a positive direction.”
Trustee Roger Krzeminski expressed concern about the legality of extending the abatement an additional two years instead of just granting her two more years, four years down the road.
Dloski said state law leaves some discretion to local governments, particularly if the business plans to hire local residents.
“The formula has a specific provision that (the decision is the) board’s discretion,” Dloski said. “They can exercise (the provision) to give additional years. The fact that the applicant is employing Macomb Township residents would be grounds to vary from the policy to grant additional years.”
Other board members threw their whole support behind the extension.
“As long as she’ll continue to always try and hire Macomb Township residents,” said Trustee Dino Bucci. “If you do your best doing that, I’ll be more than happy to do this.”
The Macomb-based manufacturing company received a personal-property tax abatement from the township in 2001 and also received a real property tax abatement earlier in 2012.
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