Muskogee County is trying to get competitive at bringing in business. County Commissioners took the first step this week by passing the county's largest bond authority, which totals $20 million. It will appear on the ballot in May.
"The competition for recruitment is extremely competitive," said Marie Synar, with the Muskogee City County Port Authority. She said this bond is more like a loan, allowing a business to pay back the bond at a fixed interest rate.
"So, having every tool available at your disposal to help compete against other communities not only within the state but all across the country, which could make the difference," Synar said.
Companies like Advantage Controls have used bonds before. Richard Morris Founded the company, and said these bonds not only bring in business but could also help grow existing business.
"We wouldn't be here if it wasn't for this program," Morris said.
Morris also said using county bonds helped him expand into an international business.
"We've used this program eight times totaling $3.5 million. It's a great program and is not like the banks," Morris added.
Synar said this bond should not increase taxes, but taxpayers might see higher property taxes if a business cannot make the payments. She said the higher tax amount would depend on how much money the county lost.
"But, each project that will be considered by the Muskogee County commissioners will be expected to have the ability to demonstrate the ability to repay these bonds. That's going to be important," Synar added.
Voters will decide on the bond on May 11.