Allied New Technologies 2 Inc. has the Manatee County Port Authority’s full support in its quest to build a new logistics center adjacent to Port Manatee.
Last week, the Port Authority agreed to send a letter to the Florida Department of Transportation in support of Allied’s intermodal logistics center grant application. The center at 2815 Inland Transport St. will “significantly increase” Allied’s cargo through Port Manatee, according to the letter to Rachel Cone, the Florida Secretary of Transportation and signed by Port Authority chair and Manatee County Commissioner Vanessa Baugh.
Allied already ships cargo through Port Manatee for use at its Fort Pierce facility. The parent company, Allied Universal Corp., has three other Florida locations, two in Georgia and one in Mississippi.
In the letter, Baugh notes that the project could bring up to 700 “direct, indirect and induced” jobs during the two-year construction period. For these estimates, the Manatee County Redevelopment and Economic Development staff use an estimate program called Impact DataSource, according to Karen Stewart, a Manatee County economic development official. Sarasota County and other neighboring counties use the program, as well, she said, “so it makes sense for us to use something similar.”
In a sample report available on Impact DataSource’s website, the economic consulting firm’s disclaimer says “no warranty or representation is made by Economic Development Corporation or Impact DataSource that any of the estimates or results contained in this study will actually be achieved.”
To quality for the FDOT grant that the Port Authority voted to support last week, an intermodal logistics center must support the transfer of freight from one vehicle or vessel to another and be located outside of a seaport. Allied’s center also includes room for manufacturing, according to planning documents submitted to Manatee County.
The FDOT grant requires a “demonstrated local financial support and commitment of the project” and requires Allied to cover at least 50 percent of the project costs, according to FDOT program documents.
In January, the Manatee County Commission approved an ad valorem tax exemption for the project, meaning a tax exemption for the assessed value of the property. The company has a staggered exemption for eight years, according to the ordinance, starting in 2018 with a 100 percent exemption in the first two years and decreasing in the following six years.
The tax exemption is a form of economic development incentive offered by Manatee County, though the approval process for it is different than other incentives.
“Tax exemption incentives are approved in a different process than economic development incentives,” Stewart said. “The economic development ad valorem tax exemption is approved in a public meeting and the agreement is also approved by the (County Commission) at a later date when construction is complete or nearly so.”
A total of $53.8 million is the estimated taxable value lost by the county in granting the exemption, according to a Manatee County Property Appraiser report cited in the ordinance passed by the commission.
In its application for the exemption, Allied estimates it will create 53 new full-time jobs by the beginning of 2019 and will invest almost $54 million into building the new facility. The intermodal logistics center project has also been approved for Manatee County’s rapid response permitting, which is intended to “assist in the growth of value-added companies,” according to planning documents.
Allied New Technologies 2 Inc. is an affiliated company of Allied Universal Corp., a water treatment chemical and swimming pool company established in 1954. Allied New Technologies is a “new, state of the art technology” that converts salt to sodium hypochlorite, or the main ingredient used in laundry bleach.
Representatives for Allied Universal were unavailable for comment Tuesday.