By Jennifer Eisenbart


While it may not have been unanimous, the City of Burlington Common Council approved a tax reinvestment program for Echo Lake Foods.

The company is rebuilding portions of its plant destroyed by a January 2013 fire at 316 West Grove Street in Burlington, but has changed the layout of its facility and also what it will produce there, moving from egg-based products to bakery items.

Those changes, according to company officials, were made to make the plant friendlier to surrounding residences

Using various incentive programs, the city drafted a 10-year tax reinvestment program, under the terms of which Echo Lake would receive 70 percent of its city taxes back on an annual basis during that time.

In return, Echo Lake agrees rebuild to a level of 250 full-time positions, at an average wage of $13 an hour.

Reductions in the employment level would result in reduction in the incentive payment.

The item came up for a vote at Tuesday night’s meeting at council, with Alderman Tom Preusker raising concerns that the $13 an hour wage and 250 full-time jobs would limit how the company could hire.

However, after a short debate, Preusker was the lone dissenting vote in approving the measure.


Other action

At the meeting, the City Council also approved a skid steer purchase and a Ford pickup truck purchase that had been budgeted for this year.