April 28, 2017
Mueller Industries Makes PILOT Pitch to Collierville
The Commercial Appeal
By Linda A. Moore
Officials in Collierville are pondering a 10-year payment-in-lieu-of-tax (PILOT) proposal from Mueller Industries Inc. that would move the company’s headquarters from Memphis to Collierville, bringing a nearly $15 million investment to the town along with 120 jobs.
Last week the Collierville Industrial Development Board heard the particulars of the plan that would move Mueller into a new building on the southeast corner of Schilling Farms Boulevard and Shilling Farms Boulevard East.
Mueller is a publicly traded manufacturer of metal and plastic flow control products. It has manufacturing and distribution facilities across the globe and will celebrate its 100th anniversary this year. It moved its headquarters to Memphis in 1996.
While Mueller looked for a new HQ, the company considered staying in Memphis, moving to Germantown or a community outside of the Mid-South, Treas said. It was aggressively courted by Mississippi, Treas told the Collierville IDB.
And they likely would have made it “incredibly valuable to Mueller in terms of dollars” to make that happen, he said.
“But when the smoke cleared, this felt like home,” Treas said.
Collierville collects about $4,700 on the land under consideration, said John Duncan, the town’s director of economic development.
The construction of a new 50,000- to 55,000-square-foot office building, including building costs and other expenses, puts the investment at $14.75 million, Duncan said. Average annual salary for the employees is $89,000.
That development, without the PILOT reduction, would generate $99,107 annually in property taxes, Duncan said.
With the PILOT, 75 percent or $74,330 of those taxes would be abated, leaving Collierville with $24,777 in property taxes.
The Economic Development Growth Engine (EDGE) board must also approve a Shelby County tax abatement.
The estimated county PILOT would be $61,000 a year and the estimated county abatement would be $183,000 a year, Duncan said.
The land and building will be owned by developer Kevin Hyneman Companies with Mueller holding a 15-year lease, Treas said.
The Collierville industrial board will vote on the Mueller proposal later in May, Duncan said. If approved it will then got to the board of mayor and aldermen for final approval and then on to EDGE.
County Commissioner Willie Brooks, a Democrat from Memphis, is a non-voting member on the EDGE board.
Although there have been challenges to the practice of companies shuffling within the county from one municipality to another, adding another state into the mix quiets those concerns.
It’s more important that the jobs stay in the county, Brooks said.
“We certainly wouldn’t want them to go out of state. If we can retain these jobs in Shelby County it would to me serve as a benefit to Shelby County as opposed to another state being able to absorb 120 workers,” Brooks said.
If Mueller’s PILOT bid is successful, it would move in to its new offices in early 2019.