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Mathis wants to harvest nuts at industrial park

In an effort to capitalize on all of its assets, the Grady County Joint Development Authority unanimously agreed to contract with a local pecan farmer to harvest nuts from approximately 125 trees at the Milestone Industrial Park.
JDA Executive Director Chadd Mathis says that various individuals have been picking up the nuts, but he believes the authority should profit from the harvest rather than private individuals.
“There is no sign prohibiting it, so people have just been going out there and getting the nuts,” Mathis said.
Under the executive director’s proposal, the JDA will contract with a local pecan farmer on halves for the nuts from the approximately 125 trees.
JDA member Chuck Thomas suggested signs be erected now to prohibit future unauthorized harvesting of the nuts.
In other business Tuesday, the authority:
•Heard an update on marketing of the former Higdon Furniture Company facility on Wight Road. According to Mathis, there has been little or no activity and he is not very pleased with the marketing effort by the broker, Colliers International. However, Mathis noted that Woodhaven Industries, formerly MacTavish Furniture, is leasing the facility and has extended the short term lease through March.
•Heard a report on a Brownfield evaluation of the former Harvey’s Supermarket location on 2nd Ave. S.E. Mathis says no environmental issues were identified and the Smith family, owners of the property, will aggressively market the property. The JDA chief says that the Brownfield grant will also be utilized for the removal of old underground fuel tanks on the Calvin Hunter property on GA Hwy. 111 South. For information about Brownfield grants, contact Mathis at 229-377-3663.
•Recommended a revolving loan application from Visual Impulse of Whigham for a $60,000 loan to purchase some new equipment and to pay off another loan at 9 percent interest. According to Mathis, the Whigham firm plans to add about 10 new jobs based on a new contracted job, which will bring total employment to nearly 50.

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