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From the Mountain Home Chamber of Commerce:

(Mountain Home) – Supporting our existing industry is one-third the focus of the FOCUS Mountain Home initiative, and the Chamber’s new Director of Economic Development, Bo Gregory, is excited to have received the local Quorum Court’s support after their unanimous vote last week to support the Legend Boat factory expansion and participate in the state’s Tax Back program.

“Local governmental support for existing industry is crucial for both retention and expansion of business as well as the positive message it sends to the outside world.” Bo said. “When considering a new location, site selectors and industries take a hard look at how you support businesses already located there; they want a good idea of how they will be treated once they are an existing industry.”

Legend Boats applied for the Tax Back program with the Arkansas Economic Development Commission, a thorough application process with very specific requirements. Once granted, The Tax Back program allows the state permission to grant back to Legend Boats any sales tax spent on materials purchased IN Baxter County for their expansion, as detailed in their state application.

To qualify a business or industry in a trade-hub county like Baxter must generate an annual payroll higher than $200,000 and show a capital outlay for expansion of $100,000 or more. For this expansion, Legend Boats plans to spend $50,000 on 13 acres of land, $615,000 on the expansion of a 75,000 square foot building, $595,580 on equipment and $686,400 on employee salaries.

A $1.26 million expansion of the Legend Boats factory at Midway will bring 30 new jobs to the area, increasing the employee numbers from 44 to 74. “Every job added is important, no one would disagree with that, but adding jobs to an existing company is crucial because it means you have retained jobs too,” says Gregory.

Legend Boats owners Randy Qualls and Dean Smith are ready to get started.

“It’s encouraging to everyone on the Legend Boats team to be a part of this program and expansion; it not only equates to more jobs, but it also means a better working environment for our current team and, at the end of the day, a better boat for our customers, ” says Smith.

For more information on the Arkansas Tax Back program, a program of the Arkansas Economic Development Commission, visit the website, www.arkansasedc.com/incentives/investment-and-job-creation-incentives/investment-incentives.aspx

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