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FD council acts on tax break for motorcycle shop

Racing Unlimited Inc. could see 10-year rate phase-in

January 12, 2010
By BILL SHEA Messenger staff writer

An expanding Fort Dodge motorcycle shop is on track to get a property tax break as a result of City Council action Monday.

The council voted unanimously to give preliminary approval to a plan that would enable Racing Unlimited Inc., 2606 200th St., to gradually assume the higher property tax burden created by an addition that's being built.

Alan Rodenborn, president of the company, said Monday afternoon that the addition will create space for building racing engines for motorcycles that are sold throughout the United States. It will replace a downtown building that was rented, he said.

The exterior shell of the building is up. The interior still must be finished. Rodenborn said he expects the project to be done by spring.

Jensen Builders Ltd., of Fort Dodge, built the addition's exterior shell. Clark Construction Ltd., of Fort Dodge, and Armstrong Plumbing, of Badger, will do the interior work.

After the completed addition is placed on the tax rolls, Racing Unlimited Inc. will pay taxes on 20 percent of its taxable value in the first year, according to Dennis Plautz, the city's director of business affairs and community growth. That percentage will rise over the course of 10 years until the property is fully taxable.

The business sells and services motorcycles, ATVs, snowmobiles and personal watercraft. Located at the intersection of 200th Street and Webster County Road P59, it was annexed into the city last year.

The City Council's action Monday places the property in the Industrial Park Urban Revitalization Area and the Center City and Industrial Park Urban Renewal Areas.

Two more council votes will be needed to finalize the tax phase-in.

On Monday, council members set the stage for offering a different type of help to another business.

The council scheduled a public hearing for 6 p.m. Jan. 25 in the Municipal Building on the possibility of vacating part of an alley in the 200 block of Central Avenue and transferring that property to Josephson Manufacturing Co., 216 Central Ave.

That maker of radiators and other engine cooling packages has two buildings that are separated by the alley. If the council approves the plan, the company will connect the two buildings, according to Andy Josephson, the vice president of operations.

''It should allow us to have a better production flow,'' he said Monday afternoon.

Contact Bill Shea at (515) 573-2141 or



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