Financing commitments approved by the Vermont Economic Development Authority (VEDA) Board of Directors will return a large industrial facility in Springfield to productive use; support the purchase and expansion of an existing manufacturing facility in Sharon; and help fund the purchase of a country inn in Fayston. The Board also made financing commitments through the Vermont Agricultural Credit Corporation (VACC) to support the purchase and operation of two equine facilities one in New Haven and the other in Colchester. VEDAs traditional and growing — support for the preeminent sectors of Vermonts economy; manufacturing, tourism and agriculture is exemplified by the Boards financing decisions this month, said VEDA Manager Jo Bradley. Jobs will be created and retained through these projects, and thats good news for all of us. The projects approved for financing are: Black River Produce, Springfield – The former Idlenot Dairy Processing facility will be purchased, renovated and restored to use by Black River Produce, with the help of the Chittenden Bank and $648,800 in VEDA financing. Black River Produce, founded in 1978 in Ludlow, sells produce purchased at Boston wholesale markets and from over 80 Vermont farms to restaurants and grocery stores in Vermont, New Hampshire, northwestern Massachusetts, and a small section of eastern New York. They also serve as a regional distributor for other Vermont food companies, such as Cabot, Annies Naturals, Vermont Butter and Cheese, and MacKenzie All Seasons. Currently located in Cavendish, the company will more than double their commercial space, and add an estimated 30 jobs to their base of 143 employees as a result of the $1.6 million expansion project. General Abrasives, Inc., Sharon A $398,850 VEDA loan will combine with financing provided by the Randolph National Bank to fund the purchase by General Abrasives, Inc. of their leased manufacturing facility in the Sharon Industrial Park. The $1 million project will provide needed expansion space for the company, securing eight jobs and adding three more over the next three years. Established in 1993, General Abrasives, Inc. manufactures sandpaper discs, as well as the equipment and tooling used in the conversion of the discs, for use by woodworkers, casket makers, and automakers — both nationally, and internationally. Philip and Alison Truckle, d/b/a Tucker Hill Inn and Restaurant, Fayston The Board approved $385,000 in financing which, along with support from Banknorth Group, will enable the Truckles to purchase and operate the Tucker Hill Inn and Restaurant on Route 17 in Fayston, operated as a ski lodge and restaurant since the 1940s. The $1.19 million project will support the purchase of the 18-room inn, an 85-seat restaurant, and a private residence on 14.5 acres. It is expected that the current four jobs at the inn and restaurant will increase to nine jobs over the next three years. Julie Tisbert and Allan Duclos, New Haven $308,000 in Vermont Agricultural Credit Corporation (VACC) farm ownership and operating loan funds were approved by the Board, enabling the purchase and development of a horse facility known as Jewell Hill Farm in New Haven. The facility will offer horse boarding, training and riding camps, and will include a 130 x 250 outdoor riding ring, and a new indoor arena. Patricia Hart-Ahonen and Timothy Ahonen, Colchester A $231,500 VACC farm ownership loan was approved by the Board to combine with Chittenden Bank financing, enabling the $576,500 purchase of a 45-acre equine facility known as Trails End Farm in Colchester. The facility includes a house, a stable, an 80 x 160 indoor arena, and an outdoor arena, and will be used for horse training and boarding, as well as for summer camps for children, and training for young riders. VEDAs mission is to provide financial assistance to eligible businesses to stimulate job creation, and enhance economic stability and growth in Vermonts manufacturing, travel and tourism, and agricultural sectors. In the Authoritys 30-year history, VEDA has made project financing commitments totaling over $1 billion.
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