Onslow County at odds over economic development funds

Kimono R Pablo
This shell building at Burton Industrial Park sold in February for $1.45 million.

The Onslow County Board of Commissioners is at odds with Jacksonville Onslow Economic Development (JOED) after commissioners shot down a request from JOED to return $250,000 of donated economic development funds.

Commissioners Chairman Jack Bright received a letter from JOED last month requesting that the county return the funds after the county sold a shell building at Burton Industrial Park. The building sold in February for $1.45 million, of which $1,232,500 will be paid out to the county over a seven-year term.

“The grand total that we have is $1.89 million that we’ve invested to make the shell building come to life in order to promote JOED projects,” said County Manager Sharon Russell.

Construction of the building began in 2016. The county donated land and contributed grant funding from its economic development fund. JOED chipped in a quarter of a million dollars of funding, both with the goal of attracting investors who can inject new jobs and tax revenue into the local economy.

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