HORIZON IS COMING TO NORTON
Norton is rolling out the red carpet. At a recent town meeting, voters unanimously approved a tax break package that will bring Horizon Beverage Company to the former General Motors plant. Horizon plans on spending $43 million to purchase and expand the former plant, a 4OO,OOO-square-foot facility on Commerce Way. Under the tax break agreement, known as a TIF, the company would continue to pay property taxes on the current assessed value of the property, but pay only a portion of the taxes on the increased value the expansion would add. The portion of increased taxes would gradually increase over the 13-year life of the agreement, with the company eventually paying full taxes on the increased value of the property. Over the 13-year period, the company would save an estimated $2.45 million in real estate and personal property taxes, while the town would take in an additional $578,588 in property taxes and an estimated $1.125 million in permitting and motor vehicle excise tax revenue. Following the vote, Michael Epstein, Horizon’s Vice President for Operations, said he was happy to see the agreement pass, and it was “heartwarming” to have the measure pass unanimously. Epstein said the company is making plans for the long term and moving to Norton is a major part of those plans. “This is the first step,” he said. The company will now petition the state for tax credits to further help make the expansion project affordable.