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DDA to consider utility rate assistance request from new restaurant

file photo.

The Chelsea Downtown Development board of directors is expected to discuss a request for its utility assistance program from Smokehouse 52 BBQ, a restaurant on Main Street, at its regular monthly meeting on Thursday, Sept. 20.

The program was first approved by the DDA in April 2011 as a way to attract new businesses and redevelopment to the downtown district and offers funds for utilities, similar to tax abatements.

If approved, the DDA will pay the city for utility costs based on an agreement between the owner of the property and the DDA. The program “provides for periodic forgiveness of the installments of principal and interest,” as part of a special assessment district for the property.

The DDA allocated $300,000 to fund the program in 2011-2012, $350,000 in 2012-2013 and $150,000 in 2014-1015.

The restaurant occupies an about 4,000-square-foot space and the proposed agreement includes an $82,324.82 payment from the DDA to the city. The payment amount is based on a 12.018 increase of REU services from the previous owner in the location.

The DDA meets at 7:30 a.m. in the new police building.

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