EARLY — The Early City Council gave final approval to more than $27,000 for two relocating businesses and will pave the way for another following slew of votes during Tuesday’s meeting.
Early city councilmen unanimously approved municipal development district grant applications for Legacy IT and Wildfire Truck and Outdoor while also approving paving the parking lot of the incoming Dollar General Store, which assistant administrator Larry McConn previously told The Bulletin would be the city’s first grocery store in years.
“I spoke with a developer this morning on that and he anticipates we should have plans on that in three or four weeks,” McConn said. “My guess is the front of the store will face Early Boulevard and there may be a service entrance off the county road to the backside of it.”
Little discussion followed an approximately 15 minute executive session to discuss issuing $27,875 in MDD grants with Legacy IT receiving $7,875 and Wildfire Truck and Outdoor receiving the remaining $20,000. The grants, introduced by the Early Municipal Development District and issued upon final approval by the city council, typically fund infrastructure, façade, parking lots and signage so that it makes both the business and city more aesthetically pleasing in the process. In the case of Wildfire, their application requested funds to cover its signage and other infrastructure costs associated with its move into a new building on Early Boulevard.
“[Wildfire] are all the way at the east end of town. They’re the last business on the north side of Early Boulevard,” said McConn shortly after the grants initial approval in late February. They’re building a new building out there with a showroom and a storefront. Right now, they’re in a portable building … This will be more of a showroom type building for them.”
The $7,875 approved for Legacy IT will go to its relocation to the Early Parkway shopping center behind Chicken Express and cattycorner to the Heartland Mall. Similar to Wildfire, the bulk of its grant will go to signage with the remaining $1,875 requested for electrical work. The Early Parkway shopping center currently has three of five commercial spaces occupied. McConn said Shearly Salon, who also received an MDD grant, will open April 1st. K LaShea’s Floral is the only business currently in operation. Legacy IT has not indicated when it plans to move from the Early Small Business Incubator and into its new location.
The council also:
Discussed bids for coastal Bermuda grass and fertilizer/herbicide for the hayfields associated with the city water treatment facility. Approved a rental fee structure for the $1.5 million Early Visitor and Event Center. Approved the city of Early investment policy and strategy with no significant changes from 2018.