Proposed rebates for DGI worth $6.2 million
Last Updated: 16:21 October 24, 2013
Council members are expected to discuss the proposed package Monday, Oct. 28, according to a document released Wednesday prepared by J. Brent McFall, Westminster's city manager.
Longmont-based DigitalGlobe (NYSE: DGI) said on Oct. 16 that it would move its global headquarters to an iconic 480,000-square-foot building in Westminster. The company needs to move to better attract new employees from the Denver metro area as it grows, Grover Wray, senior vice president and chief human resource officer at the company, said recently.
"Longmont has been a great corporate partner, but the ability to attract talent from (Denver) and south in the Denver Tech Center is difficult," Wray said.
The economic incentive package comes in the form of rebates on a use tax, a construction use tax and a building permit fee, according to the document.
McFall calculated a use-tax rebate on furniture and fixtures rebate of $5.72 million over a 10-year, six-month period, according to the document. Other economic incentive amounts include a construction use tax rebate of $333,000 and a building permit-fee rebate of $143,635.
DigitalGlobe is expected to generate $11.8 million in tax revenue for the city of Westminster in the first 10 years of operation, according to the document. Company executives announced it would move to Westminster just weeks after previously saying they planned to build a 400,000-square-foot headquarters building with room for 1,300 employees in the North Park development at I-25 and Colorado Highway 7 in Broomfield. DigitalGlobe currently is located at 1601 Dry Creek Drive in Longmont.
Broomfield economic development officials also offered an undisclosed economic incentive package to DigitalGlobe, as did Longmont officials. Neither Broomfield nor Longmont representatives returned calls for comment Wednesday afternoon about the proposed Westminster economic incentive package.
The economic incentives offered by Broomfield and Westminster economic development officials did not drive the company's relocation decision, according to Nancy Coleman, a DigitalGlobe spokeswoman. The financial incentives offered by the two communities were not substantially different, Wray said. Instead, both Coleman and Wray said moving into an existing building rather than building a new building would save the company significant capital costs.
Westminster's proposed economic incentive package represents 1.75 percent of the company's total planned investment of $355 million in tenant improvements, hardware, furniture, fixtures and equipment, according to the document. The package "is in line with other projects of similar magnitude and economic impact," according to the document.
City council members also could decide to provide no economic package, provide a smaller amount than the recommended amount, or a larger amount than the recommended amount, according to the document.
DigitalGlobe in Colorado has about 900 full-time employees and plans to add 500 to 600 additional full-time employees over the next several years, said Nancy Coleman, a DigitalGlobe spokeswoman based in Longmont. The company in June got the OK for as much as $4.4 million in state tax rebates if it creates 435 jobs in Colorado over the next five years, according to a spokesman at the Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade.
The company sells satellite pictures to a variety of customers around the globe, including the U.S. government. It is integrating with former competitor GeoEye, which it acquired in 2012. A current GeoEye office in Thornton is only a mile or two away from the new office location, Wray said. The Thornton GeoEye office is slated to close.
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