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Commissioners, council to consider economic incentives for hotel and water park at Ford Park
JEFFERSON COUNTY - by Scott Lawrence
Jefferson County Commissioners on Monday will consider offering economic incentives for a $40 million project involving a company that wants to develop a hotel at Ford Park and another company that wants to develop a water park at the same location, and Beaumont City Council is scheduled to discuss incentives Tuesday.
According to the agenda for Monday's meeting, Commissioners Court will consider, possibly approve and authorize the County Judge to sign a letter of intent to offer economic development incentives from Jefferson County to Pate Development in Wichita, Kansas, which wants to build a convention hotel at Ford Park, and to Innovative Leisure Partners, a company near Houston that wants to build a water park at the venue.
Beaumont City Council has talked about incentives during several executive sessions but hasn't voted on them. The item is on the agenda for Tuesday.
County Judge Jeff Branick told KFDM News on Friday that he believes the County and City will individually approve incentives to make the hotel and water park a reality at Ford Park.
"It would be located on County land," Branick told KFDM News. "That's why it's more appropriate that the County acts before the city takes action. We've worked well with the City. They've been giving it thoughtful deliberation. I think we'll both act on something. I think we'll offer something and they'll offer something as individual entities. I'm confident the City will offer some sort of incentives."
Branick has said no taxpayer money would be at risk.
Branick said if the projects go forward, he hopes the water park would be ready by the spring of 2015 and the convention hotel would be ready by the fall of 2015.