Rochester, MN (KROC-AM News) – Rochester City Council will hold a public hearing Monday night on a package of public subsidies aimed at maintaining the Crenlo plant and the hundreds of jobs associated with it in Rochester.
Crenlo, which specializes in manufacturing cabins for construction and agricultural machinery as well as cabinets for various commercial applications, was purchased by an investment group in 2019 and about a year later the ownership group has indicated that it was considering closing its manufacturing operations in Rochester. Since then, city and state officials have worked with Crenlo on the assistance program that would maintain and expand the company’s workforce in the city.
The plan provides for a total of $ 750,000 in affordable loans. $ 450,000 would be provided by the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development and an additional $ 300,000 would come from the city of Rochester. According to the city council’s agenda for its Monday meeting, Crenlo will maintain a minimum of 336 full-time jobs and create a dozen new full-time positions in Rochester for the next five years. The proposal calls for new jobs to pay at least $ 21 an hour without considering benefits.
Crenlo has also agreed to spend $ 4.25 million on a building retrofit program and Rochester Public Utilities is working with the company on energy saving rate incentives worth about half a million. of dollars. If employment and salary targets are not met, Crenlo could be required to repay part of the government loans.
The city council’s agenda also includes a discussion of the city’s seasonal parking ordinance which was postponed two weeks ago after the city council meeting lasted more than five hours. Council Member Shaun Palmer is asking Council to review the ordinance in light of a citizen petition recently launched by former Rochester State Representative Fran Bradley regarding concerns about the ordinance, including the duration of its application and whether parking restrictions on the odd / even side must remain in effect during periods when there are no snow events that require snow removal.
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