Commission delays vote on Fargo Jet Center's application for tax exemption
FARGO - The Fargo Jet Center at Hector International Airport was told by the City Commission on Monday to try again in its attempt to get a tax exemption.
FARGO – The Fargo Jet Center at Hector International Airport was told by the City Commission on Monday to try again in its attempt to get a tax exemption.
City staff unanimously recommended denial of an application submitted by James Sweeney, president of the Fargo Jet Center, because his proposal for a hangar expansion did not create enough jobs to justify an annual $58,628 tax break over five years.
Sweeney told the commission that his business leases about 120,000 square feet of space for commercial and private aircraft. It also offers complimentary crew cars, a lounge, concierge services and catered meals for when customers land.
“We’ve been privileged to have business success here,” Sweeney said.
The tax incentive would apply to a planned 30,000-square-foot hangar addition that would employ four people and make $135,000 in net income by its fifth year, Sweeney wrote on the application.
But those four jobs failed to impress the city’s Tax Exempt Review Committee.
“We saw this as just a warehouse, not generating any jobs,” City Administrator Pat Zavoral told the commission. “The jobs it did generate weren’t really high enough to grant any exemption on that.”
Sweeney told commissioners he erred on the application and that job growth would actually be more robust.
Commissioner Dave Piepkorn advised Sweeney to try again, and the commission delayed a vote on the issue. The Tax Exempt Review Committee’s next meeting is at 1:30 p.m. Aug. 26.
Readers can reach Forum reporter Adrian Glass-Moore at (701) 241-5599