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State Approves $850,000 Costco Bond

The State Bonding Commission approved $850,000 for Costco to build a separate driveway and other road improvements on Wednesday morning.

In August, the City approved a $2.1 tax abatement for Costco. These new funds will decrease that abatement to $1.25 million.

“When the tax modification was being talked about, everyone had concerns on how much we had to work out the deal with them. We had to pass the $2.1 million tax abatement because the state money was not approved yet,” said Mayor Erin Stewart. “We were working with Lt. Gov. Nancy Wyman and State Rep. Betty Boukus to secure state bond money for the road improvements. No one was sure the state would come through.”

Applying for the $2.1 tax abatement to Costco almost delayed the project by the Council.

“What this means is that Costco will get the assistance from the state so the modification agreement the Council passed will now subtract $850,000,” said Stewart. “I am really glad we worked together in a positive manner with the state. The Lt. Governor was an integral driving force in getting us this assistance. They realized how important this was for us, for economic development in our community. I have to thank them for that.”

Costco construction began last week at the Stanley Golf Course as the company builds its new store set to open in November/December of 2015.

Costco will build the store on 15.49 parcels of land on Hartford Ave. Three holes on the Stanley Golf Course will be moved to a part of Newington that the City purchased. That will change the Red Nine part of the golf course.

Residents in the area fought against the destruction of the golf course land throughout the project. A lawsuit appeal was not filed last week allowing the project to move forward.

Costco plans to have 225 permanent jobs (50 percent full time and 50 percent part time), every full time job having full benefits and cashiers after 5 years will make $50,000.

The City will receive over $10 million in taxes from the company in the next 10 years.

Forbes magazine places Costco at No. 3 on its top 10 places to work list.

To purchase goods at Costco, a membership is needed; they start at $55 per year. The company says it has more than 50 million members. Other locations in Connecticut include Waterbury, Milford, Enfield, and Brookfield. The company started in an airplane hangar in California in 1976.

It has over 206 locations and generates $16 billion in annual sales.

Other items on the bond commission included $800,000 for EC Goodwin Teechnical High School for improving their program and structure of type of trades they offer as well as grants to the Farrell Treatment Center in New Britain.

“It will help the buildings from crumbling,” Stewart added. “It was a good day for New Britain.”