Property sold to Global

Published 11:49 am Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Members of the Lunenburg County Board of Supervisors and the Kenbridge Town Council, in a special joint meeting held Thursday, voted in favor of the Lunenburg Industrial Development Authority (IDA) selling property from the Lunenburg Commercentre to Global Refining Group, LLC.

County Attorney Frank Rennie described the set of circumstances surrounding the agreement.

The amount of property that would be sold, Rennie said, adds up to approximately 26 acres, not including the Global Refining building that is currently there, which Rennie referred as the “shell” building.

The motion also included an approval and signature of the town and county to reserve easements that will be located on the property.

“The local organization, Global Refining Group, has expressed interest in purchasing property out of the Lunenburg Commercentre,” Rennie said, noting that the IDA and Global had a lease and performance agreement they had entered into in 2014. “(Global was) going to start up their business and move into the old shell building and begin to use that, and at that point, they wanted to lease this property from the county, but they had the option of purchasing if they got to the point where their business would warrant them purchasing that commercentre property from the county.”

Rennie noted the property, technically, is owned by the Lunenburg IDA.

“Neither the county nor the town own the property because in fact, in 2011 and then again in 2015, the town and the county deeded that property to the Lunenburg IDA,” Rennie said. “The Lunenburg IDA has been meeting for the past month to go over all of this. The IDA’s contract was with Global Refining Group where the IDA agreed to sell the property to Global Refining Group for $700,000. In our performance agreement, an option for purchase agreement, $700,000 was agreed to back in 2014 as a maximum price that Global Refining Group will pay for that property. They had some incentives built in where, if they generated enough jobs and enough capital investment in the county, then they could get that reduced a little bit. Because of several different circumstances, we agreed that $700,000 was a reasonable price for the property.”

Rennie noted that the tax assessment on the property is actually $331,000.

“It appears to be a fair price,” Rennie said.

Rennie said the purchase price was approved by the IDA, and the joint meeting sought to receive similar approval from the Lunenburg Board of Supervisors and the Kenbridge Town Council.

“What we’re coming here tonight for is just to get a concurrence, a stamp of approval, by the county board as well as the town council,” Rennie said. “The property was originally purchased where the ownership was two-thirds county and one-third … Town of Kenbridge, and the agreement was if the property was ever sold, and this agreement was made back in the 1990s, if the property was ever sold, the county would receive two-thirds of the purchase price, the town would receive one-third of the purchase price.”

“Because of some grants that the county and town got from the state government to construct the shell building and some other improvements out there, there was a condition that was dictated by those grants that if the property was ever sold, because the state provided the money to the county and town through economic development sources, that money would also have to be used — the money that we would get from selling the property — would have to be used for economic development purposes,” Rennie said.

Rennie highlighted a second part of the motion concerning easements that would be reserved on the property.

“We realized as we were looking at the surveys and the plats on the property that we needed to reserve some easements on the property for water and sewer, stormwater management and drainage management,” Rennie said. “So we have an easement deeded here that we prepared where we will reserve those easements for the town and for the county, so that any work or anything that’s needed to be done by the town or the county on that property — and the property is about 26 acres plus the shell building — anything that needs to be done from the town or from the county can be done through the easements we’ve preserved on the property.”

District Two Supervisor Frank Bacon asked if Global would be responsible for the easements as the company had purchased the property.

“But if they buy the property, wouldn’t they be responsible for it?” Bacon said.

“They are,” Rennie said. “But in the event that we have to extend water service somewhere else and we need to go cut across … property to extend that to other property that the county still owns, we can do that without having to purchase that easement.”

Members of the board of supervisors and town council voted unanimously in favor of the property being sold from the Lunenburg IDA to Global Refining Group.

Town Mayor Emory Hodges, following the joint meeting, thanked the county for its service and said the town is willing to further collaborate on projects.

“We appreciate all that you all do for the county,” Hodges said. “We really appreciate that. We want you all to know that the Town of Kenbridge is always interested in any way that we can partner with the county.”

He cited collaborations with the Town of Victoria, including within the two towns’ fire and rescue departments.