A BILL TO BE ENTITLED AN ACT TO CREATE A FUND TO PROVIDE LOANS TO LOCAL GOVERNMENT UNITS FOR THE DEVELOPMENT OF SITES AND BUILDINGS, AS RECOMMENDED BY THE NORTH CAROLINA ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT BOARD.
Amends GS 143B-437.02 to create the Site and Building Development Fund (was, Site Infrastructure Development Fund) as a restricted reserve in the Department of Commerce (Department).Provides that the Fund can be used only for the acquisition and development of sites and buildings, in accordance with GS 143B-437.02 (previously, funds could also be used to acquire options and hold options for the purchase of land in accordance with GS 143B-437.02(m)). Amends GS 143B-437.02(c) (Definitions), providing a new definition for the termsite or building development.Sets out and definesthe termsubsidized loanas a loan from the state to one or more local govenment units for site or building development having an interest rate of 0 percent for tier one counties, 1 percent for tier two counties, and 2 percent for tier three counties, for a term determined by the Department.
Amends GS 143B-437.02(d) (Eligibility), providing that in order to be eligible for consideration for site or building developmentfor a project, a local government unit must execute a written agreement with the Department which includes:
(1) A requirement that the unit obtain from abusiness leasing or purchasing property acquired or improved by asubsidized loan an agreement to meet performance criteria that protects the state's investment and secures the benefits anticipated by the lease or sale tothe business.
(2) A requirement that anyperformance criteria used by the unit include, at a minimum, the creation andmaintenance, for at least 5 years,of an appropriate level of employment and capital investmentby the business leasingor purchasing property acquired or improved by a subsidized loan and anyother criteria the Department of Commerce (Department) considers appropriate.
(3) A requirement that the unit repay any portion of a subsidized loan reducedfor job creation if the business leasing or purchasing property acquired orimproved by a subsidized loan fails to meet the performance criteria.
(4) A requirement that the unit enter into an agreement with a business leasing or purchasing property acquired or improved by a subsidized loan, wherebythe business agrees to reimburse the unit for any amount of repaymentrequired by subdivision (3) of this subsection and agrees to structure thelease or sale as a conditional grant, revocable lease, or otherwise includeterms permitting liquidated damages.
(5) A requirement that the unit enter into an agreement with a business leasingor purchasing property acquired or improved by a subsidized loan, wherebythe business agrees to meet the requirements of subsections (f) and (g)of this section.
(6) A requirement that the property acquirred or improved by a susbsidized loan will not primarily be used for entertainment, retail, professional offices, sporting events, or a museum.
(Previously, to be eligible for consideration, the only requirements were thata business had to invest at least $100 million of private funds in the project and employ at least 100 new employees.)
Amends subsection (f) to provide that in order for a business to be eligibile to purchase or lease site or building development property under this section, the business must not have any citations under the Occupational Safety and Health Act that have become a final order within the past three years for willful serious violations or for failing to abate serious violations with respect to the location for which the grant is made. Provides that for the purposes of this subsection, serious violation has the same meaning as in GS 95-127.
Amends subsection (g) to provide that a business is eligible to purchase or lease site or develop property under this section only if the business certifies that at the time of the purchae or lease, the business satisfies the environmental impact standard under GS 105-129.83.
Amends subsection (h) to require the Department to obtain a strategic business faciliites develpment analyis of potential sites for development, shell building needs, special use building needs, and buildings to be renovated, in evaluating each application. Requires the analysis to be updated every four years.
Requires subsidized loans to be evidenced by a promissory note and secured by a deed of trust on the property acquired or improved. Includes provisions for the repayment of the loan. Allows one or more financial institutions to hold a security interest on the property with priority equal to the security interest for the loan if there is a written intercreditor agreement that (1) has been approved by the Department and (2) provides that any loss, in the event of default, is shared proportionately among the creditors. Requires the Deparment to remit loan repayments to the Fund.
Requires the Department, as part of the monitoring and reporting of the Infrastructure Development Program,to reportto the Joint Legislative Commission on Governmental Operationson the status of any property sold or leased to a business
Requires the Department to develop guidelines related to the administration of the site infrastructure development, as authorized by this section, and to the selection of projects.
Requires the Department to publish the guidelines at least 20 days before the effective date of any guidelines or nontechnical amendments to guidelines. Directs that the guidelines be published on the Department's Web site and notice be provided to persons who have requested it.
Makes conforming changes to the statute.
Amends GS 150B-1(d), adding a new subdivision to provide that Article 2A of GS Chapter 150B does not apply to the Department of Commerce in developing criteria and guidelines under GS 143B-437.02.
Appropriates $400,000 for the 2014-15 fiscal year from the General Fund to the Department of Commerce to be used to contract for the preparation of the strategic business facilities development analysis required by Section 1 of this act.
Provides that the provisions of this act are not subject to the terms of GS 160A-20; also provides that the subsidized loans undertaken by units of local government are not subject to review and approval by the Local Government Commission under Article 8 of GS Chapter 159.
Effective July 1, 2014, and applies to site dvelopment agreements entered into on or after that date.
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