Freeport Approves to Intergovernmental Agreement

By: Brad Broders
By: Brad Broders

City leaders approved the intergovernmental agreement twice Monday night, first from the city's community development team, followed by the City Council's approval.

The intergovernmental agreement involves the 5,000-acre plot of land, the Mill Race Crossing industrial park behind the Kelly Springfield plant near Freeport.

The agreement basically says both the city and county agree to pursue business projects on the land for the next 23 years.

Four companies, including Trim-Rite, have expressed public interest to set up business on the land. With the city approving the agreement, the Stephenson County Board is now expected to vote on the same document within the next month or so.

Freeport Mayor Jim Gitz says the agreement has the proper checks and balances, and proves both the city and Stephenson County are proactive in luring new development and jobs.

"We know that in a global economy, with lots of manufacturing jobs that are moving out of country, it is more important for us to be aggressive than ever. That is why this intergovernmental agreement special legislation is along those lines," Gitz said.

Before the Stephenson County Board makes their vote on the intergovernmental agreement, consultants are preparing an incentives package to help lure new development on the industrial park land.

Should the county board approve the intergovernmental agreement, they must hold public hearings to discuss new industrial opportunities on the Mill Race Crossing industrial park.

Freeport Mayor Jim Gitz says the agreement has the proper checks and balances and proves both the city and Stephenson County are proactive in luring new development and jobs.


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