Vacating County Road Paves Way for Future BraunAbility Investments

Braun Ability logoA major employer in Winamac may be taking the first steps that could lead to future investments.

Monday night’s Pulaski County Commissioners meeting brought a request from CDC Executive Director Nathan Origer following talks with BraunAbility and the Indiana Economic Development Corporation. Under the proposal, County Road 60 between 14 and 25 South would be vacated by the county.

Origer says there’s a process at work behind the change.

“I don’t know a lot about what the proposed expansion that Braun is going to be undertaking, entails,” says Origer. “I don’t have investment numbers or job creation numbers yet. I don’t have a lot of that. I do know they are expecting to make some continued significant investments in Winamac.”

At this time, Origer says BraunAbility is aware of tight municipal budgets, expressing an interest in alternatives to the typical property tax levy abatement. Assuming the investments or expansion are completed, the company would assume all property taxes right away.

Origer reminded the county commissioners the state rarely approves economic development incentives without requiring some skin in the game at the local level.

Commission President Terry Young says the vacate proposal was made some time ago for safety reasons.

“We have lift trucks and pedestrians all day long, and it’s a county road and it’s very dangerous,” says Young.

Plans are in the works to begin a new route for truck traffic.

The Commissioners showed their support Monday night to move ahead with the project.