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Marina work, new industrial district top Boyne City Commission business

BY BENJAMIN J. GOHS, EDITOR

Marina improvements and a request for a new industrial district designation topped the Boyne City Commission’s Tuesday July 11 meeting.

Boyne City Manager Michael Cain, Boyne Mayor Tom Neidhamer and the city’s harbormaster Barb Brooks signed a grant agreement for phase one of the city’s expanded marina improvements project which is covered for up to $260,000 by a grant from the Michigan Department of Natural Resources Waterways Commission.

 

“The first phase of the project is the beginning of the new floating breakwall or wave attenuator,” said Brooks, who added that the first phase won’t be enough to remove the old wave attenuators. However, phase two will allow the moving and expansion of docks.

The project will be bid out this fall and built over the winter and installed in spring of 2018.

“I just have to commend Barb and the job she is doing as harbormaster,” said Cain…. “Our marina has progressed so far under her leadership.”

The only other major piece of business was a consideration to hold a public hearing and start the process to create Industrial Development District #6 as requested by Van Dam Custom Boats.

The new Industrial Development District would be located on their properties south of Division Street, just west of M-75.

Van Dam’s properties are zoned regional commercial/industrial.

Cain recommended that, if the city commission chose to establish the proposed new district, any tax abatement requests involving this and any other IDD be considered first by Boyne’s existing Economic Development Commission for a recommendation to the city commission.

Cain said this would provide a uniform two-step process for considering all such requests, no matter where in the city they come from.

“Our business is going through a succession process—I have a second generation that’s going to do business—and we’re looking ahead towards a vision of the future,” said Steve Van Dam.

Van Dam said currently there are two businesses on the property—Boyne Boat Yard and Van Dam Custom Boats—but he would like to create more businesses in the future.

“Part of our vision going forward is maybe to have another marine-related business—we have a couple of ideas, maybe two or three,” Van Dam said. In the shorter term, he said he hopes to add onto their custom boat facility with more shop and office space.

New NLEA Director of Business Retention and Growth Buck Love said it makes good economic sense for Van Dam to pursue this.

There were no comments from the general public.

The commission approved the resolution authorizing establishment of the district to be named “Boyne City Industrial Development District #6” and authorize Cain to execute the documents, and direct the Boyne City Economic Development Commission to review and make recommendations to the city commission regarding requests for abatements coming from any Industrial Development Districts established in the city.

The vote was 4-0. Boyne City Commissioner Hugh Conklin was absent.

 

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