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Rick Dorley addressing the council as Mayor Bobby Payne looks on

IDB looks to add "Economic Development" label

By Michael Butler

Tallassee Industrial Development Board chairman Rick Dorley spoke to the Tallassee City Council about the board's intention to add the tag Economic Development Profession to its enhance its identity for future projects.

"We get stonewalled at times," said Dorley, who pointed out that the IDB passed a resolution about the designation for the Alabama Department of Commerce. "This allows us to work with state agencies for state benefits and not rely on other agencies to handle that for us."

Dorley was asked specifically by councilman Darrell Wilson who those "other agencies" are. Among them is the Elmore County Economic Development Authority.

"In the past, we have worked with ECEDA," Dorley added. "For some reason they have been working contrary to the IDB. For instance, the tax abatement - we've been fighting to abate county ad valorem taxes. Tallassee can't abate because we don't levy a city tax. It was an incentive.

"On the last day of the legislative session, House Bill 196 passed. The city can no longer abate county ad valorem taxes. We'll have to go before the county commission."

Dorley said they are seeking a veto from Gov. Roberty Bentley on the bill.

"If it goes into effect, those 66 cities will be hurt. Many do not act in industrial development like Tallassee. It'll be Valley, Vance and us that will be hurt," said Dorley. "We are the industrial hub of the county. It does away with the one-stop process. If somebody's not going to work for us, then we'll just do it ourselves."

The council scheduled a follow-up meeting with the IDB to further discuss the topic for May 19.

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