Buchheit employees, community leaders gather to celebrate early retirement of bond

Tuesday, March 30, 2010
Cutting the Buchheit's TIF note Monday are, from left, Cape Girardeau County Presiding Commissioner Gerald Jones, Jon Buchheit, Jeff Buchheit, Jackson Mayor Barbara Lohr and Tim Buchheit, in background. (BRIAN BLACKWELL)

Buchheit employees and community leaders gathered Monday afternoon to celebrate the early retirement of a bond whose funds helped develop Old Orchard Road.

Though the original maturity date was Dec. 27, 2021, company officials paid off the $1.7 million tax increment financing revenue bond March 1. Buchheit chief financial officer Reid Willen said ample sales tax revenue was the reason for the payoff 11 years early.

Improvements funded through the bond were necessary to complete a main street entrance to the store at 2801 Old Orchard Road, Buchheit officials said.

Since the 110,000-square-foot store opened its doors in March 2000, Willen said, the Jackson community has been a perfect fit for the company.

"The community had embraced and supported us," Willen said during a reception at Jackson City Hall. "We're thrilled we're able to get it paid off much earlier than expected."

The TIF bond paid for the development of Old Orchard Road from East Jackson Boulevard to a city water tower on the roadway. TIF is the process of using extra tax revenue generated by an area to pay for its own sewer, streets and other infrastructure developments. The TIF money provided such improvements as paving of the road, installation of a stoplight at the intersection of Old Orchard Road and East Jackson Boulevard and sewer and water extensions.

Since Buchheit located to Old Orchard Road, other businesses, such as Ashley Furniture and Comfort Suites, have set up shop along the roadway.

Jackson city administrator Jim Roach believes this is only the beginning for future business expansion along the roadway, which will be extended to East Main Street from Bainbridge Road in the fall.

"The future is poised for growth," Roach said. "A big part of bringing more business to the area is public infrastructure, which is one thing potential businesses look for when exploring whether or not to locate to a particular area.

"The work by Buchheit is a magnet," Roach said. "It feeds on itself."

Cape Girardeau County Presiding Commissioner Gerald Jones said the early repayment is an example of how repayments of TIF bonds should work.

"It went almost better than perfect," Jones said. "It enabled the city and county to recruit good business to this area."

Jackson Mayor Barbara Lohr said Buchheit's decision to open its doors in Jackson was a winning move for the city, county and Buchheit.

"Buchheit took a chance coming here, and it worked," Lohr said. "They're a stable, progressive company and that's shown through their 10th year of being here along with the early payment of their bond. We're looking forward to their relationship with Jackson for many years to come."

bblackwell@semissourian.com

243-6635

Pertinent addresses:

101 Court St., Jackson, MO

2801 Old Orchard Road, Jackson, MO

Map of pertinent addresses

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