LDC abatement hits a snag with Kosciusko County Council over waiver

A view of the Kosciusko County Courthouse.
By Dan Spalding
News Now Warsaw

WINONA LAKE — Plans for a new round of tax abatement for Louis Dreyfus Company hit a snag Thursday night when it became apparent the Kosciusko County Council objects to including property the company purchased before initial paperwork for the proposal was submitted.

Louis Dreyfus is seeking abatement on $59 million on new property that would be phased in over a ten-year-period.

The plan was reviewed by Kosciusko County Council in January but Council President Mike Long later reached out to company attorney Steve Snyder expressing concern about the proposed waiver sought to include some property purchased before paperwork was filed.

On Thursday, Snyder addressed the county council and outlined a long history of abatements approved by the council that included waivers.

Snyder said if the county wants to change their approach, they should change their policy.

“If we’re going to have a change in what has happened historically, I would like to be in a position to get that policy out so that my clients very strictly follow that policy and we’re not confronted with that,” Snyder said.

Snyder sought and received a delay on the matter.

The topic will be revisted in March.

Excluding the waiver at this point would leave the company in a difficult position.

“It would be several million dollars that were purchased prior to the SB1s being filed that could not be abated,” Snyder said.

Neither Long nor any other council members on Thursday night publicly explained their concern with the waiver.

However, a letter supporting the tax abatement was submitted by Kosciusko Economic Development Corporation applauding the company’s record of investment.