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Wells EDA wants to market two new sites

By Staff | Jul 3, 2016

When a city wants to sell lots for a new industrial park, how do they go about listing the properties? That is what the Wells Economic Development Authority discussed at their regularly scheduled meeting on June 21.

The present members of the EDA board discussed trying to find ways of involving master databases in the listing of industrial and commercial properties.

With president, and real estate agent, Brad Heggen abstaining from the conversation, Tim Clawson of the Faribault County Development Corporation explained to the board what their options were to get more potential buyers interested in the lots available at both the north business park and the south industrial park.

“At this point, we are just exploring this as an option,” said Clawson. “The MLS, or multiple listing service, cannot be accessed by the city unless a broker is involved.”

If the city were to hire an outside broker, like one from Mankato, Albert Lea, or another larger city, the city would have to give up to an eight percent commission to the hired broker.

However, if a local broker were to take on the project, those dollars would become localized, allowing the broker to keep the whole commission of the lot purchases.

“We want to bring these types of deals to Faribault County,” says Clawson. “If we keep our generated dollars local, they stay inside our county and we can continue to promote the goods and services we have available to us.”

According to Clawson, 95 percent of site collections are on the MLS?online. For now, the EDA?is still looking into all of their possible options to expand the market for available lots in both the new and upcoming business park, as well as the south industrial park.

The EDA also discussed the Faribault County Commercial Rehab Loan program.

The initiative itself was set up about a year ago by the Faribault County EDA, while the USDA (United States Department of Agriculture) helped to set up the program.

The commercial rehab loan program can help businesses with up to $30,000 for any type of improvement project. The endeavor takes 85 percent of the cost while 15 percent is paid by the owner, or other sources of funds. Local EDAs can receive a forgivable loan up to $2,000.

Clawson shared that a rough estimate is 99 percent of businesses in Faribault County are eligible for the commercial rehab loan project.

The EDA’s hope at their meeting was to make more business owners aware of the loan program and its many benefits that are available. From roofs that need repairing, to painting, to expanding, Clawson says there are still plenty of funds available to help businesses in Wells, as well as other parts of Faribault County.

The EDA also discussed:

The need for more day care facilities in the city of Wells.

After the announcement from the Wells Community Pool stating that children could not be left unattended or with babysitters under the age of 12, a growing concern was realized.

“I don’t think we have many certified day care facilities in Wells, do we?” asked EDA?member Whitney Harig. “If we do, we need more.?I think proper day care facilities are becoming few and far between for our town.”

Clawson’s response to the concern is that there would have to be a special meeting to discuss how the EDA?would become involved in the possibility of more day care options.

United Hospital District’s local clinic in Wells.

There has been growing concern about the parking lot at the clinic’s facility and whether or not there were any solutions to assist in not only repaving the parking lot, but perhaps remodeling the lot to better assist individuals into the building.

The Wells EDA’s next regular meeting will be held on July 19, at 5 p.m. in the Wells Community Center.