Salem City Council approved performance agreements for three Salem businesses that will give them tax breaks encouraging economic development.
Two are on Wildwood Road and one is relocating to West Main Street from Fourth Street. Angelle’s Diner, which opened last year, and Avid Hotel that is under construction, are both on Wildwood Road.
The third is Little Caesars, which is also in the construction phase and expected to open this spring, to replace its Fourth Street location.
Monday night, Salem Council voted 4-0, with Councilman James Martin absent to allow City Manager Jay Taliaferro to execute performance agreements on behalf of the three.
The city will waive the building permit and utility connection fees for water, sewer, fiber optics and electric for Little Caesars, being developed by Rocky Mount Realty LLC. The wavers will be $15,000 or under, according to the agreement.
Salem via the Economic Development Authority will loan $500,000 to Avid hotel developer Dev Om LLC. The city also will waive utility connection fees not to exceed $50,000, and building permit fees up to $20,000.
Dev Om LLC will also get a $30,000 grant to assist in paying for a retaining wall. The city will reimburse the developer 15 percent of the transient occupancy generated for four years, not to exceed $120,000. Avid is scheduled to open by the end of 2020.
Angelle’s Diner will also have waived fees waived for connections and permits up to $10,000. The city will give back to Angelle’s an amount equal to the difference in real estate taxes from redeveloping the property that was a long-closed Shoney’s.
A condition for the reimbursement is that the restaurant owners invest at least $1.5 million.
Since the restaurant is already open, the performance agreement will be applied retroactively toward investments made by the owners, operating as Blue Ridge Best Foods Inc.
The former Shoney’s was described in the performance agreement as improving “an unproductive blighted area and encourage renovation and rehabilitation of adjacent parcels.”
Owners can also apply to the city and the EDA for a grant of up to $10,000 for renovation to the front of the building, under the city’s façade grants program.
The three performance agreements were added as supplemental agenda items to the Feb. 24 meeting. The final item was another added item, a closed session for discussion or consideration of disposition of city property.
Earlier in the evening, council held a public hearing to consider on first reading rezoning property owned by Henmark Inc. at 1107 Kesler Mill Road. The rezoning would change that area from Light Manufacturing to Residential Multi-family District, to allow a four-unit, multifamily dwelling.