Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Company to bring 35 jobs to White Oak in move from Diana

By Jimmy Daniell Isaac
Oct. 11, 2017 at 11:26 p.m.

Maverick Business Forms is moving its plant from Diana to  a 1.9-acre lot at Willow Lake Business Park in White Oak, officials said.

WHITE OAK — Thirty-five jobs are coming to White Oak after the city approved a $400,000 incentive agreement.

"And we're having trouble not acting excited," White Oak City Councilwoman Barbara Ray quipped during a council meeting Tuesday.

In other council decisions Tuesday, a restaurant that is set to open today received a permit to sell alcoholic beverages, infield improvements are coming to the White Oak High School baseball field and an idea to expand mobile food trucks into White Oak was tabled.

Maverick Business Forms is moving its plant from Diana to White Oak, bringing jobs and about $1.7 million in investment on a 1.9-acre lot at Willow Lake Business Park, City Coordinator Charlie Smith said.

The White Oak Economic Development Corp. is issuing a $200,000 grant to Maverick and will loan the company another $200,000 one year after it receives its certificate of occupancy from the city. Council members approved the agreement, which includes no interest on the 10-year loan.

"There's a lot of folks he's bringing to town," Councilman Lance Noll said of the 35 jobs coming with Maverick.

Added Mayor Kyle Kutch, "It will be a good thing for the city."

In other business, the council granted a special use permit to Louisiana Pride, a Cajun-style restaurant that is set to open tonight in the Savage Village development on U.S. 80 East.

Owners Andy Schrumpf and Heather Rejcek said the restaurant will be "a family place" where beer and wine will be the main alcoholic beverages sold, along with the occasional margarita or other mixed drinks.

Rejcek decided to open the restaurant after she first went to the city wanting to get a permit to bring a portable building to her property and open a food truck-style restaurant, she said. After learning she would need $100,000 for a commissary, another $60,000 for a truck and multiple permits, she changed her mind within 24 hours, she said.

Rejcek isn't the only person who has contacted White Oak City Hall asking about bringing mobile food trucks to the city, where they are outlawed by ordinance, Smith said.

"I get a lot of calls from people wanting to do some kind of food truck," said Smith, who presented council members with copies of Longview's mobile food truck and outdoor vendor ordinances.

"You may want to look into it before you totally agree upon it," Rejcek warned the council, "just so that you have everything you need to know information-wise because it could become a pain."

After more than 12 minutes of discussion, council members said they preferred city ordinances as they are, which allows outdoor food vending only during certain special events such as Roughneck Days.

Council members also selected low-bidder Paragon Sports Constructors to improve sod and surface conditions on the infield of the baseball field at City Park. The field is used by White Oak High School's baseball team.

Under a $38,000 contact, Paragon will complete the project — including putting down the same sod used at the field — within five working days, Smith said.

Denny Kienzle with the White Oak Roughneck Athletic Booster Club asked the council to consider allowing the club to sell advertising signage at the baseball field as a fundraiser.

Pegues-Hurst Ford in Longview recently bought banners at the end zone of White Oak High School's football stadium and is inquiring about placing a sign at the baseball field, Kienzle said.

If council members allow it, the money would support all high school athletic programs and scholarships for college-bound athletes.

"I don't have a problem with it," Noll said, "and all of the money goes back to the kids and the program."

In a separate matter, the council appointed Selina Tabor to the city's Zoning Board of Adjustments.



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