Buena Vista County Supervisors Chairman Paul Merten says county officials have spoken to one possible potential buyer for Albert City's massive Vera-Sun ethanol plant. The plant is expected to go up for auction later this month after the company fell into financial crisis last fall. Merten says the individual who contacted the county was interested in whether or not the current tax property abatement on the building would be available to a buyer.
Merten visited with a representative from the Iowa Department of Economic Development about the agreement that was approved in 2004. The official told Merten he though the County could extend the agreement, renegotiate or possibly eliminate it.
Supervisor Ken Hach says he felt the County should renegotiate. Merten says he'd be more interested in renegoating if a potenial buyer is a local investor rather than an oil company. The original abatement was a 100 percent exemption for 15 years and 25 percent for each of the next five years.
*In other county news:
The Board expressed concern about some large bills coming in from the Cherokee YES Center with a couple of youth offenders housed held for a week or two at a time. Board members said no offenders have yet been sent to the Central Iowa Juvenile Detention Center as the board had approved recently. They said they'd like to see youth held for longer terms being transported to the Eldora facility which charges $80/day rather than Cherokee's fee of $150/day. "At half the cost I'm willing to inconvenience the parties involved," said Supervisor Dale Arends, who said he didn't want taxpayers to have to have to continue to pay the price.