By JIM ANDERSON
KINGSFORD - Kingsford Broach & Tool Inc. will break ground this year on a new manufacturing facility west of Lodal Park, following approval Tuesday of a property sale by Kingsford City Council.
The company is acquiring a 6.5-acre city-owned parcel at the corner of Knudsen Drive and Maule Drive at a cost of $13,000.
The project announced in June 2013 is to include a 31,200 square foot facility consisting of 26,600 square feet of manufacturing space; 4,600 square feet of office space; and a paved parking lot for approximately 35 to 40 vehicles.
The estimated $2.5 million cost includes $1 million in new equipment, according to Mark Schultz, Kingsford Broach & Tool president. At the time the project was proposed, Schultz said the company employed 34 manufacturing workers and nine office employees and hoped to add 10 more workers in the next five to 10 years.
Apart from an extension of electrical power - which will be paid by the city - utilities are in place, said Tony Edlebeck, city manager. Under a state- and city-approved Industrial Facilities Tax (IFT) exemption, the company is eligible for a 50 percent property tax reduction for up to 12 years.
Kingsford Broach & Tool Inc. is now housed at 850 East Blvd. in Kingsford. That site in the former Ford Motor Co. complex is approaching the end of its useful life and there is no room to expand. The new building will be designed for streamlined production and an expansion of product lines.
Established in 1968, Kingsford Broach & Tool produces cutting tools for industries worldwide. The company also offers repair, reconditioning and sharpening services to its customers.
In other action, the Kingsford council:
- Heard Edlebeck report that discussions are taking place with the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality on a pilot program that would allow Trico Opportunities of Kingsford to screen, bag and sell compost from the city's collection site. Because of limited space, the city eventually sends compost to Dickinson County's solid waste site in Quinnesec at an annual cost of more than $3,000, Edlebeck said.
- Renewed a lease with J B Vending Service of Iron Mountain for a portion of the city's block storage building east of city hall. The company will rent two of the building's five stalls for three years at an initial cost of $284 monthly, with yearly adjustments for inflation. Previously, the lease was for three stalls at $425 monthly.
- Learned that the Dickinson County Road Commission has proposed contracting for winter plowing in two small areas of Breitung Township (near Ford Airport and the Iron Mountain-Kingsford Wastewater Treatment Plant) that can be done more conveniently by the city.
- Heard council member Cynthia Dixon-Miller respond to a letter from council member Brian Smeester, published in Tuesday's Daily News, that said Dixon-Miller "is the head of the union at the Kingsford Post Office." Dixon-Miller said that hasn't been true going back 27 years. Smeester was absent from Tuesday's meeting, due to work obligations.
Jim Anderson's email address is firstname.lastname@example.org.