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Huntington Sheet Metal get tax break on $1 million worth of machinery

December 17th, 2018

By Andrew Maciejewski for the Herald-Press | Indiana Economic Digest

Huntington Sheet Metal will receive property tax relief for ten years on more than $1-million-worth of machinery, after the company promised city council to make the investment and create a new job to operate the machine.

Huntington City Council unanimously approved the abatement following a special meeting of the City of Huntington Economic Development Commission on Dec. 10, in which the commission also unanimously approved the deal. Huntington Sheet Metal Owner Dan Drummond said the new equipment is more efficient and will replace older equipment, according to meeting minutes.

Drummond said his company has been stationed in Huntington for 43 years and continues to invest into the company to create more jobs in the community. Their company currently employs 86 workers and does not plan to cut any staff even though the machinery helps automate production.

Huntington County Economic Development CEO Mark Wickersham and Drummond said the No. 1 challenge facing industrial and manufacturing companies today was a shortage in qualified, skilled workers.

“In order to counter that, we have to invest in more automation and more robotics and more training, so this application is for bending equipment that will add some degree of automation but will also require an engineering-type person to program,” Drummond said.

The project increases the property value of the company, which will increase property tax revenues after the 10-year abatement phases out. The first year of the abatement, the company will receive a 100 percent abatement on property tax, but each year after that, the incentive will reduce by 10 percentage points, until it is fully phased out.