Las Vegas Sun

October 1, 2014

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Politics:

North Las Vegas to approve $625,000 grant for Nicholas & Co. food distribution center

The North Las Vegas City Council will sign off on an agreement tonight approving a $625,000 grant that helped lure a Utah food distributor to expand to the city.

Nicholas & Co. plans to open a 215,000-square-foot distribution facility near Sloan Lane and Las Vegas Boulevard North this summer.

The Salt Lake City company was drawn to North Las Vegas with the help of a $625,000 award from the state’s Catalyst Fund.

The incentive is tied to hiring and will be paid out over five years. The company will receive the full amount if it creates 125 jobs.

Although construction on the project has been underway since August, the city waited to approve the Catalyst Fund award until the company started hiring, said economic development director Terri Sheridan.

The fund’s goal is to provide extra funding to help companies choose Nevada. “It’s a little bit we can use to push them to ‘Yes,’ ” Sheridan said.

Nicholas & Co. considered several sites, including Phoenix, before choosing North Las Vegas, said Steve Hill, director of the Governor’s Office of Economic Development.

The company supplies more than 10,000 food products — including produce, poultry and seafood — to restaurants and other large customers in the West.

Hill said the distribution facility fits in well with the state’s focus on logistics as an area ripe for economic expansion. Catalyst Fund dollars are typically used to lure companies that provide services or goods that are exported to other states, he said.

“Economic development is about bringing money from outside the state into the state,” he said. “That money that comes in is swirled around in the economy of the local community.”

The Catalyst Fund has been used to recruit 12 companies to Nevada at a total cost of about $8 million, Hill said. The fund, created by the Legislature in 2011, has about $3.5 remaining.

In addition to the $625,000 Catalyst Fund award, Nicholas & Co. also received a sales tax abatement on equipment purchases and a 50 percent cut on payroll taxes in its first four years.

The company is expected to create about $650,000 in local tax revenues per year, according to the Las Vegas Global Economic Alliance.

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