Council denies abatement for Middlebury Cheese


LAGRANGE – The LaGrange County Council did something today (Monday) that it hardly ever does – it denied a request for tax abatement.

The trouble began last month when council delayed acting on the request by Middlebury Cheese because of incomplete information. It also learned that the building permit issued to Middlebury Cheese a few years ago was for far less than the amount the company was seeking abatement on.

County Attorney Kurt Bachman said the company’s attorney promised answers – but none came.

"I asked them how to explain the original permit application that had a value of $145,000 when they estimated their real estate improvements [for the tax abatement] at $2,275,348. Other than receiving a very quick response, in short terms saying they're extremely disappointed with this information but they would be most happy to provide us with a detailed explanation, I've received nothing."

Planning and Zoning Administrator Robbie Miller made a site visit to the new building since last month’s council meeting.

"They hadn't finished at the time but they did come in and pay a fine for not having some inspections through the building department. I haven't followed up since then."

After hearing that, council voted unanimously to deny the tax abatement.

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