CANNELTON – Before the public works and city council meetings kicked off April 2 in Cannelton, the public was invited to two public hearings to discuss a tax abatement for a local business and the city’s plan to apply for a rural development grant.
City attorney John Werner opened up the floor to the handful of residents in attendance to hear comments first about a tax abatement for Moskos Brothers LP, who are working to improve several buildings along the city’s Seventh Street.
“I think anything at all we can do to help out the community to get things going in this town, I’m all for it,” Ed Lawalin commented from the audience. “Anything you all (city council) can do to help them out, let’s do it.
Councilman Jack Harris commented that the area the company is helping to improve is a bad spot in the town.
"He’s changing that,” Councilwoman Lynn Fulkerson added, referring to company representative Rob Moskos, who was also present.
Cannelton police officer Bob Campbell said abandoned areas such as the buildings being remodeled are always trouble for law enforcement since those who are homeless might break into those buildings.
“We’re constantly watching because we figure people are cooping up in there. It might not be such a hazard now, but come winter they’ll be building fires to stay warm by and they’re liable to burn the place down,” he explained.
After hearing the comments, council members were presented with the final resolution, which would grant the company exemption from all property taxes for three years, followed by a seven-year exemption of property taxes on any increase in assessed valuation created by improvements made on the property.
The resolution was passed unanimously.
The second hearing was lead by Mayor Mary Snyder, who asked for support in her efforts to obtain a grant from the U.S. Department of Agricultural Rural Development office.
“They said we qualified for a rural development grant,” she explained, “because we are a low-income area.”