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Twin Falls And Urban Renewal Agency Honored For Chobani Financing
Twin Falls, Idaho ( KMVT-TV / KTWT-TV ) - The Twin Falls Urban Renewal Agency and the City of Twin Falls has been awarded the 2013 Council of Development Finance Agencies Excellence in Tax Increment Finance Award. The announcement came during the national convention in Washington D.C. The CDFA said the city and the agency was given the award for creatively using tax increment financing to fund infrastructure for the Chobani yogurt plant project.
The award recognizes outstanding programs that utilize financing tools for economic development, and honors those organizations that champion the efforts. Greg Lanting, mayor of the City of Twin Falls, and Melinda Anderson, executive director of the Twin Falls Urban Renewal Agency, accepted the award on Aug. 8.
“This really was a partnership among the Agency, the City, Chobani and Zions Bank, which carried us over the finish line,” said Anderson. “This would not have been a success had we not worked together.”
Anderson was also asked to speak about the site location decision process, the economic impact to the community—more than $1 billion annually—and how the deal was financed.
In July 2011, Chobani first met with the City of Twin Falls to explore sites in the City as a possible loca¬tion for its new facility expansion. In Nov. 2011, Chobani signed a development agreement with the City and the Agency to build a new facility on 190 acres. Chobani has invested about $450 million and hired more than 700 employees. The City and Agency provided more than $37.5 million through tax incre¬ment financing and a local improvement district to pay for infrastructure that is needed for the facility’s operations.
On Dec. 17, 2012 Chobani opened its new yogurt plant—just 326 days after it broke ground.
“CDFA is proud to honor the City of Twin Falls and the Twin Falls Urban Renewal Agency for their excel¬lence in development finance,” said Toby Ritter, President and CEO of CDFA. “Their work in the area of tax increment finance is cutting edge, innovative and an example of best practices in our industry.”